August 21, 2019

Beekeeper’s Calendar: August

The colony is now just past its peak population and starting to raise brood destined to become winter bees. As the population decreases, it is important to keep an eye on mite levels which will continue increasing. Sample colonies using a sugar roll or alcohol wash and if threshold is exceeded, apply mite treatments. Make sure to follow the label instructions if you have honey supers on the … [Read more...]

Beekeeper’s Calendar: July

Honey bee colonies hit their peak during this month. Add empty honey supers as needed. You can harvest honey when the honey flow slows (usually the end of July) or hold filled supers in a cool, protected location until the fall to evaluate whether the honey is needed for overwintering. Monitor Varroa populations. A mite treatment may be necessary prior to supering for the fall honey flow. … [Read more...]

Beekeeper’s Calendar: May

Brood rearing is in full force and populations inside the hive will build up quickly. Most of your time this month will be spent managing for population buildup and swarm prevention. Reverse brood chambers if necessary and inspect the brood pattern. Check the queen’s performance and for symptoms of brood disease. Re-queen any hives with failing or poor performing queens. Divide colonies at … [Read more...]

Fill out the 2019 Maine Beekeeper Survey!

The annual Maine beekeeper survey of losses and management practices is now live and ready for your input!  Gathering this type of data is important for seeing trends, recognizing when and how losses occur, and determining where to focus education/outreach activities in the future.  A summary report of the survey will be presented at the Maine State Beekeepers annual meeting in October … [Read more...]

Beekeeper’s Calendar: April

APRIL Brood production is ramping up this month. A few good pollen and nectar sources will start blooming, but poor weather may hinder the ability of foragers to access it.  Continue monitoring food reserves and feed light syrup (1:1) inside the hive if necessary.  Scrape bottom boards and quickly check the brood pattern on a mild day (calm, sunny, and above … [Read more...]

The Beekeeper’s Calendar: March

Most queens will be laying eggs by the end of March. There will be very little natural forage available so monitoring food reserves is critical. It is not uncommon for a hive to make it through the hardest part of winter only to starve in March. If honey reserves are low, feed candy or dry sugar. Colonies that consume feed should be monitored carefully and fed as needed. Feed pollen … [Read more...]

MSBA at the 2019 Maine Ag Show

For the 44th consecutive year, MSBA was represented at the 2019 Maine Agricultural Trades Show at the Augusta Civic Center on January 15th - 17th, 2019. Organizer Lynn Lamb of Western Maine Beekeepers Association recruited members from around the state to volunteer for a shift. Sponsored by the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, the three-day show is held every year in … [Read more...]

Beekeeper’s Calendar: February

Bees will spend most of the month in a tight cluster. When the weather is above 40°F they will move to new areas of the hive and take cleansing flights. Late in the month, some queens may start to lay eggs. As a result, food will be consumed faster. Check wintering colonies for honey reserves by hefting the hive to feel the “honey weight”.  On warm sunny days (above 40F without wind) you can … [Read more...]

The Beekeeper’s Calendar: January

The bees will spend most of the month in a tight cluster. When the weather is above 40F the bees will move to new areas of the hive and take cleansing flights. Gauge food levels in wintering colonies by lifting one corner of the hive and feeling the “honey weight”. If it is warm (above 40F without wind) you can quickly peek through the hole in the inner cover to see where the bees are in the hive … [Read more...]

Order bee supplies now for delivery at annual meeting

The following vendors are offering free delivery to the MSBA Annual Meeting on October 13th. Space is limited in their trucks so call or place your order online ASAP! Betterbee – deadline 5 pm on Monday, October 8th. Order by phone or online. Must pecify pick-up at MSBA meeting and include your mobile # in website comment section. Brushy Mountain –Due to unforeseen circumstances Brushy … [Read more...]