Rules for Live Bee Removals and Cut-Outs – 2016

Removal in Cottonwood Heights Utah by Albert Chubak Rule 1: If pollen isn’t coming in… then either scouts are visiting, and they can visit in large numbers, or it is being robbed. Rule 2: Don’t seal up or spray a beehive unless you know the specifics of what is going on inside. If you do either of these, and there was an active colony inside, the bees will look for another way to get outside – which is usually through the inside of the home. Rule 3: If bees have been there before, they either never left or are returning […]

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“Training Wheels” A Beehive for Beginning Beekeeping – 2018

Up until recently the beekeeping industry had a “one size fits all” beehive: a commercially sized beehive that everyone had to use and learn with, without any thought of the needs of the aspiring beekeeper. Needs for individual aspiring beekeepers vary and include age restrictions, weight limitations, area availability, pollination gardens solely for beauty, apitherapy, gardeners with pollination needs, those wanting to dabble in a new hobby but are on the fence, and the list goes on.  There are many reasons to keep bees but only one hive was available, a huge massively packed box with almost 10,000 bees initially. […]

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Beekeeping Terminology – Festooning – 2017

Festooning is a term used in beekeeping. Thousands of bees can be utilized in a single festooning event. Bees festoon in a temporary swarming event and inside the beehive when forming structures made of beeswax. Inside the beehive bees form a scaffold by holding to each other.  This act of festooning allows house bees to climb on hanging bees to construct wax comb structures. This photo shows bees festooning off of Katelin Radke’s finger. Honey Bees Festooning on Katlin’s Finger by Eco Bee Box

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Why Use the Honeycomb Boxes for Brood? – 2018

A while back we were asked, “Why do you use the honeycomb box for brood?” Our question back was “Once you have bees in your single box beehive (Langstroth deep), what can you do with it?” Funny, the comment was “Then I raise bees.” Our thoughts were, actually, you sit and wait and wait and wait. Then we asked, “How long before that Langstroth deep box is full?” The answer was, “It depends.” This was getting good, so we asked: “What do you do when the first Langstroth deep beehive box is full?” Again an expected answer, “I add another […]

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Wintering Honey Bees Begins in Summer – 2019

Each spring season begins sadly with reports of failed winter colonies. It can be disheartening to visit an apiary in hopes of a successful winter only to find a dead colony after a dead colony. Wintering bees begin the summer prior, some even claim as early as the spring prior especially if it starts from a package. Understanding summer obstacles is vital for the long-term life of a colony. One huge obstacle is a dearth. A dearth is a time of famine for a bee colony where nectar and pollen may be in limited supply. Limited supplies of forage may […]

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Don’t Add a Second Box Too Soon – May 2019

In spring many beekeepers acquire a 3lb package of spring honey bees with a newly mated young queen. The zealous beekeeper is anxious to see growth, BUT please consider a few thoughts before the “let’s do this” hurts your colony. On the 5th of April 2019, we brought packages back to Utah from the OHB honey day in Northern California. These packages were turned over to beekeepers on Sunday the 6th and hived that day and up to a few days later. Understanding bee growth and their biological clock is vital this time of year. Once the bees are put […]

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Relationship Between Bees, Bee Wax, and Expansion – 2019

“How do I get the bees to build in the comb box?” A few issues have to be addressed to answer this question. Getting bees to do anything requires understanding their health, location, seasonal challenges, nectar flow (artificial or natural), the relationship between bees and hive space, understanding of the bee and wax production, and their growth cycles. Each point will be addressed individually. Health – Bees are more likely to expand and utilize unused space within the hive when they are healthy. Expanding bees equals wax production, foraging, and storage. Varroa mites eat fats, and bee fats are similar to […]

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Until First Failure vs Learning Experience to Learning Experience – 2019

As we currently see it there are two systems of beekeeping. The first, the traditional Langstroth deep, but you can add the top-bar and Warré to this, and the second, which is what will be taught here. The first system is a “to your first serious challenge” for many, it too often ends in failure and results in the beekeeper being sidelined until the following season. These beekeepers usually begin with a 3lb package and a mated queen. These packages are only available at the beginning of the season, then they are sold out until the next year. There are […]

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When Baiting Swarms Don’t Use a Screened Bottom Board – 2016

Albert Chubak was called to inspect a beehive in 2016 because bees appeared to be under the hive, rather than inside.  A number of bait hives had been set up in the yard in hopes of capturing colonies swarming in the area. This colony moved in but missed the target, requiring beekeeping surgery to correct it. Before going into how the bees were relocated to their intended destination, here is a list of rules to follow when baiting swarms: Rule 1 – Do not have food stores in a bait hive, as this will induce robbing.  A colony wanting a […]

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Honey has a Magical Property – 2019

Honey has a magical property that few know. Want to know what it is? Historically honey was used as was propolis in embalming in ancient Egypt. So what does that say? It aids in the removal of water from whatever it is with. From the time the nectar is secreted by the plant and collected by the bee, it takes on the flavor of what it is with. Once the honey has been artificially dehydrated by the honey bee honey wants to naturally rehydrate. Essentially honey is “nectar jerky”. LOL. Nectar does not just become honey by itself, it has […]

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