Time to gear up for bee-season!
-Bees should be emerging as the weather warms. Check their food stores and feed with syrup (2:1) if necessary.
-Check equipment and wooden ware.
-Make sure you’ve ordered your bees if you are starting a new colony or if your bees didn’t make it through the winter. Bees are usually delivered in early April, so order early.
-Watch for swarms.
-Keep an eye on mite loads.
-Honey harvest time!
-Treatment of bees for varroa mites and diseases should be done by August 15.
-In August, do a thorough inspection of your colony to determine:
-Amount of food stores.
-Brood quantity, location, and health.
-Condition of equipment and comb; move old or damaged comb toward edges.
-Consider re-queening if queen isn’t strong.
-If your colony is weak and no diseases are present, consider combining it with another colony.
By late September or early October, the top boxes should be filled with food and brood should be at bottom. Do a quick inspection to:
-Verify honey stores.
-Verify colony configuration.
-Add entrance reducer.
-Be sure that the hive has adequate ventilation.
-Feed bees if not enough food stored for winter.
-Heavy syrup (2:1) at > 55°F
-Dry feed at < 55°F
-Watch for robbing.
-Check food stores and feed wtih solid sugar, fondant, protein patties if
temperatures are below 50°F.
-Watch for bees in Hazelnut trees when catkins form.