Category Archives: Beekeeping

Keeping the Cougars out of your Bee Yard

Ever been chased by a mountain lion? How about a cougar, panther, or puma? Me neither, but I’ve probably passed within metres of all four. (I’m told that they’re all the same species – Puma concolor.) A new study from … Continue reading

Posted in Bee Yards, Beekeeping, Diseases and Pests, Strange, Odd Stuff | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Urban Beekeeping Mug

Yesterday, Father’s Day, my family surprised me with this homemade mug. They had conspired to co-create this bit of art for the past few days. I heard the hushed tones and I saw people and things quickly disappear when I … Continue reading

Posted in Bee Yards, Beekeeping | Tagged , | 8 Comments

Miel Carlota – Once the World’s Biggest Bee Farm

One of the world’s largest honey farms was a Mexican outfit started by a couple of guys on holidays from Germany. The Second World War broke out while they were rambling around the Mexican coast, so they stayed for an … Continue reading

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Mind the Gap!

If you travel metro in London (and many other cities) you might hear a polite admonition from the public address system, “Mind the gap!”  It’s advising you not to get your footwear stuck between the train and platform while boarding. Beekeepers … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping, Ecology, Honey Plants | Tagged , , | 13 Comments

Swarm Season

It’s swarm season here in the north. That will end soon enough, but right now it’s pushed by long days and a heavy dandelion flow. Hives just can’t help themselves. In the old days of skep and gum beekeeping, a … Continue reading

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Bee’s Eye View

Looking down from a light aircraft gives insights you just can’t match on the ground. At 6,000 feet, you appreciate how close flowers are along a beeline from hive to field. Beeing in the air is useful for a beekeeper … Continue reading

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Long Live the (New) Queen

During the past week, we looked at how to requeen a hive. On Monday, we considered the reality of queen troubles and how our hives differ from feral colonies. Tuesday was about identifying a queen’s quality from her brood pattern, … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping, Queens | Tagged | 5 Comments

Sticking the Queen In

Over the past few days, I’ve written a little about identifying poor queens by examining brood patterns. Then we discussed  finding and pinching her failing heinousnesses.  The next step in your requeening saga is inserting the caged queen. Here in … Continue reading

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Pinching the Queen

Today I’ll write a few words about finding and murdering the old queen. We’ll assume that you have decided the queen must die. Harsh as that sounds, sometimes it’s the only way to save a hive. Think of the colony … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping, Queens | Tagged | 10 Comments

Good Queen; Bad Queen

Quite a few commercial beekeepers replace queens every second year. It’s a scheduled event, sort of like a birthday. Half the hives will get a new queen in 2017, the other half in 2018, then back to the first group … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping, Queens | Tagged , , | 20 Comments