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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Sunday, September 8, 2013

What is happening with the bees

The nectar flow is pretty much over for most beekeepers. Dry weather has really dried up the nectar producing flowers. Pulling supers and extracting honey is what is going on now. Getting mite treatments on should be done at the same time. Supers off - mite treatments on.
 Extracting honey, spin out the capped honey and the uncapped honey separately.
The uncapped could have a high moisture content and it is wise to have their moisture levels checked before the honey gets mixed together. The moisture is checked with a small sample of honey on a refractometer. I have one here in my shop and check moisture levels for free.
 Mite treatments:
Apiguard is Thymol gel. It comes in shallow tins. A 1-1/2" shim is needed to raise the roof so the bees can get at the Thymol Gel. One tin is placed on the top bars of the top box. Two weeks later another tin is put on the top bars. Easy to use. Temperatures have to be above 60 degrees to work properly.
Hopguard made from Hops. Cardboard strips drenched in the miticide liquid. Treatment is two strips per brood box once a week for three weeks. Can be used at any temperature. The boxes have to be lifted off one another to put the strips in.
Miteaway quick strips (formic acid) Two strips per hive for one week. Temperatures need to be 60 - 84 degrees. An organic respirator is required to put the strips on.
Apivar  two strips per box for 6 weeks.
Feeding If a colony is short on stores feeding needs to start right away. A beekeepers can't feed with Apiguard or Miteaway on the hives.
When feeding a mineral oil supplement such as ProHealth should be added to the feed. Some beekeepers have been using this to prevent nosema in their colonies.