If you don’t have little kids, or it’s been a while, let’s break down for you why kids’ coughs can be a truly miserable problem that can drive you to madness.Continue reading
The Marathon County Beekeepers Association is presenting a full day of speakers in Wausau WI on the campus of North Central Technical College. Registration is now open. Cost is $49 until February 29, 2020 and then it is $59. NOTE: If you are over 62 years of age the cost is only $21.90. The discount is given at checkout. For more information or to register.
Last year 6 BCBA club members carpooled to Wausau. There are already 3 folks from BCBA have signed up and are planning to carpool again. If you would like to carpool contact the club president, Dave Elsen.
Within a hive there are three types of bees. The queen, drones, and worker bees. There is only one queen in a hive, is female, and lays eggs to produce more bees. About 15% of the hive population are drone bees which are male and their only job is to mate with a different queen. Finally about 85% of the bees are female worker bees and they do all of the work around the hive. They take care of the brood, clean and defend the hive, and gather pollen and nectar.
There are numerous factors to consider when determining where to place your hive(s) which include they physical location, bee needs, and human needs. A good starting point is to do an internet search to determine if your local community has set guidelines for maintaining hives. Allouez Wisconsin, for one, has a number of rules to be followed.
- South facing is optimal – early morning wake-up to start foraging
- Shade in the PM – so the hive doesn’t overheat in summer
- Access to water – needed to make honey
- Good air ventilation – so the hive doesn’t get damp
- Wind block – can be man-made or natural to help hive survive the winter
- No obstruction in front of hive – bees like to exit and fly up
- Slight lean to the front – so rainwater can drain out
- Pollen and Nectar Sources – for honey production
- Level side to side – bees don’t care but could hurt honey production
- Accessible by vehicle or cart – honey and equipment are heavy
- Permission – check local ordinances and neighbors
- Accessible from the back of hive – best to work from the back of hive
- Weeds and Mowing – keep the hive weed free and trimmed
The following video discusses the most basic bee equipment that a first time beekeeper will need. You will learn about different personal protection gear, gloves, hive tools, bee brushes and smokers.
There is promising research coming out of Finland which, if successful, will be the first insect vaccine. American foulbrood is a devastating disease that requires killing all of the bees and burning of all equipment to prevent the spread to other colonies. The vaccine is edible and is passed from the queen to her offsprings. Read the full article here.
Brown County Beekeepers Association is happy to announce that we will helping support an Urban Beekeeping project in downtown Green Bay, WI.Continue reading
Purchase your tickets by January 12, 2020 for the movie “The Pollinators” and it will be shown in Green Bay at Marcus Bay Park Cinema on January 23, 2020.
Watch the Movie Trailer
Overview: Much of the food on our tables comes from the intrinsic act of pollinating the flowers that become the fruits, vegetables and nuts we eat, but agricultural practices, pesticides and politics are making that simple act of nature more difficult everyday. Honey bees pollinate one third of the food we eat, yet alarmingly honey bee populations in this country have fallen by half since the 1940’s and continue to decline. Honey bees are threatened by indiscriminate pesticide use, disease, industrial scale mono-culture farming and powerful corporate lobbying interests that work to influence the EPA and USDA, who are our gatekeepers for a safe agricultural system. Our very food system is under threat and rests on the wings of these tiny insects and the commercial beekeepers that move them from farm to orchard pollinating crops that native pollinators can no longer adequately accomplish.
This film will follow migratory beekeepers and their bees throughout a growing season, joining them as they stop to pollinate the myriad plants and trees that depend upon honey bees to grow and produce our food. Much of the work moving bees is done at night when the bees are in their hives so few people actually get to see what these beekeepers do. Throughout the journey we will meet farmers, scientists, chefs and academics to give perspective to this complex food system that we all depend on. We will explain the problems of modern large scale agriculture, offer ideas on how it can be improved and learn about these pollinators that are a subculture of agriculture and a vital cornerstone of our entire food system. It’s a cinematic road trip that will result in a feature length documentary film about the importance of pollination to our food system, the complex interrelationship between migratory beekeepers, their bees and the agriculture system that needs these migratory honey bees in order to grow the food we eat.
The short answer is that honey can contain a bacteria that babies digestive systems are not yet developed enough to handle. The learn more click here.
Our last post about how to stop honey from crystallizing struck a nerve of at least one reader who contacted me directly. The point was made that honey with anything added was no longer natural, must be labeled as such, and, in their opinion, was not the right thing to do. Personally I don’t plan to add corn syrup to my honey for personal consumption or for sale. Here is an article on why honey crystallizes and argues that it is not a bad thing. I’ll let you draw your own conclusions.