Winter Neglect

I admit, I’ve definitely been absent around here as of late. Lots of things going on, but not a ton of it is bee-related!

Yesterday I presented at the Kalamazoo Bee Club’s annual Bee School. My topics was, “Whoops, your queen is dead!” The aim was to reassure new backyard keepers that, if they did lose a queen, all was not a lost. I covered some easy ways to requeen, how to know if your queen is actually dead, and a timeline to keep in mind if you’re going to let the bees requeen on their own. The session went well and there were a lot of great questions / comments!

Heard a great presentation about the newest research regarding the treatment of varroa mites. Putting my thoughts together and then will post on that in the next couple of days.

A Hive Update

We still have two strong hives. Yesterday my husband lifted the lid to throw a pollen patty in and got stung on the knuckle! He said it’s probably the first time he was happy to get a sting! We haven’t had winter success in a  long time, so the fact that it’s mid-February and we still have two strong hives is wonderful… fingers crossed!

We’ve never fed pollen patties before and are starting them a teensy bit early in hopes that we can get a jump-start on brood-building, so that we can make some early splits. Once the bees dig into the pollen, they eat like crazy, so if you’re planning on feeding pollen patties, make sure to also feed and/or keep an eye on that honey supply!

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