Presentation on theme: "Summer Management and Honey Production before - during and after the honey flow."— Presentation transcript:
Summer Management and Honey Production before - during and after the honey flow
TOPICS IN THIS LESSON 1. Strength of the colony 2. Swarming 3. Adding supers 4. Using the smoker 5. Honey extraction 6. Hive inspection
Remember from last week There are 3 ways of doing things 1. The right way 2. The wrong way 3. Your way Why is there a third way ?
BECAUSE Your the beekeeper
Summer Management Management applies to commercial beekeepers
Summer Management And to the hobbyist
Early Spring Over wintered colonies need to be checked for a laying queen and a supply of honey and pollen( which is protein) --if short of honey a supply of sugar water must be added along with a pollen substitute- re- queen if required.
Early Spring Feeding Sugar syrup – 1 part sugar to 1 part water Pollen substitute – make a patty using Drivert sugar ( bakers sugar ), Mega Bee, mineral salts and a little bit of essential oil. This goes on the top frame.
Check for disease and strength of the colony
Brood diseases American Foulbrood European Foulbrood Chalk brood Varro Mite Tracheal Mite Small Hive Beetle Wax moth ( Brood disease will be covered in a later lesson )
Strength of the colony The objective should be to have the colony reach it’s peak of strength at the time the main honey flow begins---the preparation for this should begin the preceding late summer or early fall. Those 3 requirements— a good queen-plenty of pollen- and plenty of honey !
Package bees or a new queen The beekeeper must take into consideration these time periods to16 days for a new queen to hatch days for a worker bee to hatch days for a drone bee to hatch
Mid Spring Management Hives should be checked for swarm cells-- they may be removed to keep the bees from swarming or if the beekeeper wants to increase the number of hives, then the beekeeper should leave them in and hope to be around when they swarm– it’s best to have extra hive bodies on hand.
Watch for Swarm Cells
Summer Management April/May FEED- FEED- FEED Reverse your Hive bodies Make sure there is food in the brood chamber Make sure that your queen is laying - look for eggs and larva Get your Supers Ready Prepare to SPLIT or Add Hive Body to prevent swarming u
Summer Management How to Check your Queen Presence of Queen Learn to recognize Eggs, Larva, Capped Brood vs. Capped Honey Eggs situated in normal position What a Queen Looks Like Quantity of Brood Brood Should be on several frames Frames should be about 2/3 full of brood – corners have honey Quality of Brood Brood pattern should be solid – not a mixture of capped and uncapped in the same area. Check on honey and pollen stores as a bad brood result from lack of food!
Brood Chamber with Food Brood Food
Brood Chamber with Food Brood Food
Brood Chamber with Food Brood Food
Summer Management How to Check your Queen For a Productive Hive – Queen MUST produce 1500 to 2000 eggs/day Replace the Queen with a newly mated Queen Kill the Queen and allow the colony to make a new one (~40 days to Eggs) If two very weak hives, kill the Queens, combine hives, re-queen
Find Eggs and Larva
Finding the Queen
Find the Queen
Summer Management June – July Check hives for any signs of robbing, weak colonies, swarming or anything out of the ordinary. Add supers as required—if top brood chamber is ¾ full—it’s time to add a super
Swarming Swarming is a great way to increase the number of your colonies– but not so good for your honey crop that year.
Swarming usually occurs from May thru July—but can vary !
Why do bees swarm Who knows ? 1.Some say it’s due to overcrowding. 2.Some say the old queen is bad—but if she is bad how can she start a new colony ? 3.Other reasons are improper ventilation, starvation or supersedure impulse. 4.Swarming is the bee’s natural way of dividing colonies to create new ones.
Preventing a swarm
Swarm Control One method of swarm control is to remove the swarm cell located on the bottom of the frame The Demaree method separates the queen from the brood which relieves congestion in the brood chamber. A queen excluder is placed between the two hive bodies.
Catching a swarm The old queen leaves the hive with a number of worker bees. They usually gorge themselves with honey ( except for the queen - she has to stay slim and trim) Scout bees look for a new home– now it’s up to the beekeeper to give them that new home.
Honey Extraction August-Sept When the first super is 2/3 capped over it’s time to take it off and replace it with another super—providing that the bees are still bring in nectar.
Removal of frames 1.Use a smoker 2.Shake or use a brush 3.Bee Go or other chemicals 4.Use a leaf blower Remember– you’re the beekeeper– what works best for you !
Using a smoker The smoker was featured last week –but remember– the type of fuel used in a smoker contains pollutants and toxic gases – use fuels that are derived from natural sources ( wood shavings, dried grass, pine cones etc.) A few puffs of smoke at the entrance and under the top cover are sufficient (as a precaution–carry a fire extinguisher)
Wear protective clothing How fast can you run ?
Shaking the frame Once the frame is removed give it a few good shakes to dislodge the bees OR Use your brush Gently brush the bees off the frame ( I do this in front of the hive )
Honey Extraction Chemicals BeeGo/Honey Robber (n-butyric anhydride) Sprinkle on Cloth and place over super Nasty smell drives bees down out of super Risk of contaminating Honey!
Honey Extraction Bee Blower Leaf blower will work works well and is convenient
Honey extraction Place frames in an empty super after bees are cleaned off. When all hives have been emptied of capped frames you are ready to begin extraction. When all of the frames have been extracted you can put them back on the hive and let the bees clean them out.
Honey Extraction De-capping the Comb Hot Knife Uncapping Fork
Honey Extraction Drain the Cappings/save the wax
Honey Extraction Extractor
Honey Extraction Chunk Honey/Cut Comb Honey
Wax Production A valuable by-product of beekeeping! DO NOT USE OLD Brood Comb!
Uses of bee’s wax 1. cosmetics 2. candles for churches 3. wax for beekeeper products
Hive inspection How and When to Check Your Hives Is too much Inspection a Bad Thing?
Hive Inspection Nothing Short of a “Home Invasion” Beginning Beekeepers Inspect their Hives TOO MUCH ! Goal is to get familiar with “outside” to tell you what is happening on the “inside” How does the colony behave? Are there a lot of bees coming and going? Are there dead bees/larva on the landing board? Is there a strange smell? How much does your hive weigh?
Hive Inspection Nothing Short of a “Home Invasion” IF YOU SEE # of Bees seems to be decreasing Dead Bees, larva, or pupae on the landing board Detect a strange or foul odor Bees that are unusually temperamental Robbers, predators, or leaking honey Lethargic, aimless, or deformed bees ANYTHING out of the Ordinary OPEN IT UP!
Hive Inspection Nothing Short of a “Home Invasion” Visually Inspect your Hives Exterior Often BUT Removing Frames: Disrupts Hive activity for 4-8 hours Agitates the Bees Breaks Propolis Seals Damages comb and disrupts Honey Risks Heating or Chilling Brood Changes the Hive Humidity – harm larva Invites Predators into the Hive RISKS HARMING THE QUEEN
Routine Maintenance Be Non-Invasive! Lift Lid and Slide Inner Cover Slightly to the Side To: Add sugar water to the feeders Add Pollen patties or mite treatments Weigh Hive To: Determine Hive Health (Honey, Comb, Bees are heavy) Look for Swarm Cells by Lifting Hive Body and Inspecting all Frame Bottoms at the same time Look of Mites by use of Sticky Board
Summary What we have covered 1. strength of the colony 2. swarming 3. adding supers 4. using the smoker 5. honey extraction 6. hive inspection Remember-you’re the beekeeper