Springtime is arguably the busiest time of the year for both the honey bee and the beekeeper. From the bees’ perspective, the activity begins before Spring actually arrives. In late winter, as the days increase in length, the queen will resume laying eggs. Slowly at first, as the adult worker bee population that has wintered over has began to dwindle.
We often get asked “what do your bees do in the winter?”. Given the rather brutal winters we experience here in the West Michigan area, these questions are often prompted by concern for the bees’ welfare. The quick answer to the question is that bees eat lots of honey and try very hard to keep warm. However, what is actually going on within a honey bee colony during the winter months is a bit more complex than that. In this article we’ll attempt to give you a basic understanding on what is going on in the hive during the winter.
Ever wonder just how much nectar the bees bring in on a single afternoon? Wondering just how much of that syrup you just fed was stored vs. used by the bees for maintenance? Electronically monitoring honeybee colonies 24×7 provides fresh insights into what is happening in the colony. Read about how we’re working with the Bee Informed Partnership on creating a nationwide network of hive scales.
Our previous article provided some guidance on the essential equipment you will need to keep bees. Now it’s time to talk about the bees themselves. As a new beekeeper you have a number of options available to you when it comes to getting honeybees for your new hive. Perhaps the most common option for new beekeepers is to purchase package bees. Package bees are raised by commercial beekeepers in the southern states here in the USA. A young mated queen with attendants is placed in with the bees in her own small cage, and a tin of syrup to sustain the bees on their journey.
There is no end to the various types of beekeeping you can purchase for your beekeeping hobby. Beekeepers are constantly inventing new gadgets to simplify beekeeping, and the bee supply companies are more than happy to peddle them. In this article we will take a look at the essential equipment that you will need. There are plenty of things you can go spend your money on, some of it useful and some of it not so useful. Here we focus only on the essentials or “must haves” if you plan to keep bees.
Honeybees are one of the most amazing creatures the Creator has placed here below. They are are fascinating, and they also exhibit many qualities that we humans were meant to but often do not. Honeybees are industrious.
According to some people local honey will cure your allergies, and others are simply into locally grown products. Whether you want to reduce your carbon footprint or support local agriculture, buying honey that’s made by local bees is not a bad idea.
Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions. There are a couple of ways to you can contact us. You can call us via telephone anytime Monday – Saturday. We’d prefer you call sometime between 8am and 5pm Eastern. Our voice phone number is: (616) 209-9BEE