As noted in the preface, this report by no means exhausts all the microlivestock possibilities. Lack of space and time precludes discussion of creatures such as edible insects, snails, worms, frogs, turtles, and bats, which in some regions are highly regarded foods. Similarly, we have not included fish, shrimp, and other aquatic life.
This is not to say that these are less worthy of consideration. The decision to leave them out was arbitrary, but with several recent breakthroughs in tropical beekeeping it seems prudent to include bees. Accordingly, the final chapter of this book describes the smallest livestock of all.
Bees are one of the most promising microlivestock. They forage on flowers that are otherwise little utilized and produce honey, wax, and other products of high value. They are important as plant pollinators and can greatly increase the production of some crops. Bees can be kept virtually anywhere with little disruption of other activities, and they are easily available.