This blog explains how I keep bees. It works for me, it might not work for you. Use my methods at your own risk. Always wear protective clothing and use a smoker when working bees.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Trying to finish up

Adding a feeder pail. If the hive isn't level I grab a stick to level out the pail.

I have been trying to finish up. I have fed some fumigilan treated syrup, The Apiguard is coming off in a couple of my bee yards.
The weather has been ideal for this.
I see colder weather on the horizon for next week. I know the bees have to be fed syrup in the next 3 days. Waiting to long the bees might not take it.
Not much else to do. The honey has been extracted, most of the bees medicated. I have two bee yards I couldn't treat with Apiguard. I was to busy to make it happen. I guess formic next spring will have to do.
Good news I have not seen the bear.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

This might be the last good week for Apigard

Apigard tray on the top bars. Note shim to raise the roof. So the bees can get to the Thymol gel. Put the inner and telescoping cover on to close up the hive.

The weather the rest of the week looks perfect. As Sept moves forward the window for using mite treatments is closing.
Apigard needs warm weather to be effective, This week could be the last hurrah for this.
Apigard is a Thymol gel in a foil tray. First take off all honey that will be extracted.
Read and follow all directions. Apigard is a fall treatment only.
Remove the foil top and place on the top bars in the top box. Put a 1 x 2 shim on the top box to raise the roof an 1 - 1/2" so the bees can remove the thymol gel. Close all entrances, put in the drawer on any screened bottom boards. Leave the main entrance open. One foil tray is on for two weeks then one more two weeks later.
Apigard kills Varroa and Tracheal mites.

Monday, September 8, 2008

I had the evil eye put on me.

This picture is fairly intimidating. It must be the bear or a werewolf. I have my camera at about 5 ft 6 in. off the ground. A deer isn't that tall. It has to be the bear. I set my camera to take 3 pictures, this was the set all taken in one minute.
He must be standing up looking at the infrared flash. Bears hate trail cameras and usually trash them.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Dealing with Granulated Corn Syrup

This is a pail heater. This type of heater is not to be used in honey.

The shielded end keeps it away from the pail. I make sure the heating element is totally submerged in syrup.

Pushing it into the granulation it will heat up quickly. I never leave it unattended while it is heating.

I use a drywall mixer on a drill motor to stir it. This mixer also works great for mixing sugar and water in a 5 gallon pail.
When I add fumigillan to syrup this works great for mixing it in.

I have to feed my bees. All my HFCS high fructose corn syrup has granulated since spring. I use my bucket heater to liquefy the syrup. The heater in the pail took about 2 hours to liquefy stirring it a couple times. This heater is not to be used on honey as it is not approved to use with food.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Trouble came a calling

The puncture pail opening method works best for bears.

The bear wanted some bee supplies.

I finally got a picture of this troublemaker. He ate a 5 gallon pail of Bee Feed without even taking the lid off. He used the incisor puncture method. I am sure he was very satisfied with that.
This was 20 yds from my back door.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

It's Time

I know with the cooler temps it is time to pull all my honey and get the meds on. Labor day was hot and I pulled about 75 supers off. The hot day made the honey robber on fume boards work great. I brought home a very small number of bees.
I will start putting on fumigillan now in syrup and treating for Varroa.
Any colony that didn't produce and seems to be dwindling could possibly have Nosema Cerane. The fumigillan should be able to clear this up. Hopefully the bees have time to recover.
Feeding early is better than feeding late. Feeding promotes brood production. I want the bees to slow the brood rearing as fall deepens and it gets colder. This will save more food for winter.