Just in time to send a June update - I cannot believe we are 50% of our way through this year already! I hope your bees are behaving better than mine this year - I think they might have overhead me saying I wanted to use them as the poster girls for NHMS and now they're rebelling. The swarm I collected from UKCEH has been my best-behaved hive so far!
Now that we are in the midst of 2022 analysis and 2023 collection, I will update you on both in this month's newsletter.
I know that, if you submitted samples in 2022, the thing you most want to know is "when will the pollen breakdown for my honey be ready?". The current state-of-play for 2022 samples is:
- sugar/water content has been uploaded for 1,380 samples (those that hadn't crystallised)
- habitat/crop data surrounding the hive has been uploaded for all 1,481 samples
- 1,146 samples have been filtered for pollen grains
- 768 samples have had pollen DNA extracted
- 576 samples have had pollen DNA amplified by PCR
- 384 samples have been sequenced and these data are with our bioinformatician for profiling
We are still a little way off releasing the pollen data and we thank you for your continued patience. As I have explained in previous newsletters, the combination of NHMS being unstaffed for several months and a bumper number of samples in 2022 created a backlog that Ellie and I are still working our way through - while learning the processes ourselves. We understand your frustration with the delay, but if I could ask you to be kind in your emails it would be greatly appreciated.
Another super response from everyone this year - thank you! We have received 693 requests for sampling packs, from the following locations:
So far 209 samples have been returned to us and 172 samples have had their sugar/water content measured and uploaded to the website.
A few of you have asked where you can see the NHMS data from previous years. We have not yet published a data paper on these data, but are currently exploring ways to share it with you in an interesting and interactive way. I will keep you updated on this too.
Thank you for getting in touch regarding presentations about NHMS - I currently have six association talks scheduled in until the end of the year, and plenty of space for more! Zoom is likely easiest in most cases, but I am happy to travel up to an hour from Abingdon in any direction to give an in-person talk.
On behalf of the NHMS team