Saturday at the Hive

Neil Bertram apiary - Saturday at the Hive visitors

Neil Bertram apiary – Saturday at the Hive visitors

I live in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. It’s a remarkable city. Economist magazine ranks us as the world’s fifth-best city (they place Vancouver and Toronto as 3rd and 4th) while the international agency the Mercer Group says Calgary has the cleanest environment of any city on Earth – clean air, clear glacial water, tidy streets. Both Economist and Mercer failed to mention that Calgary also has the best beekeepers’ club in the world.

I’ve spilled many a pixel raving about the Calgary Bee Club and its education programs, school outreach, swarm collection, bee community projects, honey shows, and diverse meetings, so I won’t do that again today. Instead, I have a few photos (thanks to Liz Goldie)  from one of our club’s weekly summertime “Saturday at the Hive” events. A couple of weeks ago, my friend and fellow bee instructor Neil Bertram invited 35 of his closest friends to see his bees and tour his off-grid honey shop in central Alberta. Neil runs a bit over 300 producing hives and makes about 60,000 pounds of honey almost every year. He wholesales most of it and he keeps his costs down by doing his own building, repairing, beekeeping, and extracting.

Neil Bertram enthusiastically shares what he knows. Hundreds of beekeepers have become better beekeepers because of Neil’s commitment and his living example of better beekeeping. I’d better add this disclosure, too:  Neil co-stars in our hit program Making Money from Honey. Without his work and support on that project, Money from Honey wouldn’t be nearly as good as it is.

Photos on this page were graciously provided by my bee buddy, Liz Goldie.

Saturday at the Hive, Alberta style:

Neil keeps typical scenic Canadian apiaries.

Neil keeps several typically scenic Canadian apiaries.

Neil demonstrates his extracting line.

Some of Neil's crop comes from his 3-way splits, housed in the nucs at the bottom. The bees share the honey supers, stacked above.

Some of Neil’s crop comes from his 3-way splits, housed in the nucs at the bottom.
The bees share the honey supers, stacked above.

Neil's extracting line

Neil’s extracting line

Plenty of storage space for supers and honey.

Plenty of storage space for supers and honey.

Nearby canola fields feed the bees.

Nearby canola fields feed the bees.

 

 

About Ron Miksha

Ron Miksha is a geophysicist who also does a bit of science writing and blogging. Ron has worked as a radio broadcaster, a beekeeper, and is based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. He has written two books, dozens of magazine and journal articles, and complements his first book, Bad Beekeeping, with a popular blog at www.badbeekeeping.com. Ron wrote his most recent book, The Mountain Mystery, for everyone who has looked at a mountain and wondered what miracles of nature set it upon the landscape. For more about Ron, including some cool pictures taken when he was a teenager, please check Ron's site: miksha.com.
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One Response to Saturday at the Hive

  1. Pingback: Summer Doldrums – Making Money from Honey

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