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Author Archives: Dave Strickler

Raising Nucs

I recently took an advanced beekeeping class from Dean Stiglitz of Bee Unto Others¬†and the book The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Beekeeping. It was a great class, and I came away with lots of questions answered, and as with any good teacher, my mind was full of follow-up questions well after the class. One topic … Continue reading »

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EU Bans Neonicotinoids

In a milestone victory for environmentalists and beekeepers, the EU has banned the use of neonicotinoids for the next two years. While still controversial,¬†neonicotinoids are believed to be one of the links to CCD (Colony Collapse Disorder) that is responsible for killing off almost half of the bees populations found in industrialized nations. While Bayer … Continue reading »

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Alive and Kickin’

I went to Sandy (my only hive, but about to be joined by another) today to check how the ladies were doing. They had seemed OK when I had peaked in last time, but since I was only looking at the top of inner cover, I wasn’t sure if the handful of bees I saw … Continue reading »

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How To Assemble Hive Frames

I’ve had quite a few beekeepers ask me why I don’t build my own hives. While I’m not carpenter, I can muddle through the basics, as long as nothing has to look good or stay vertical for more than a few days, but building a hive from scratch is a bit edgy for me. But … Continue reading »

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Mid-March Feeding

I took a look at the ladies today, and all looks well. From the picture you can tell that there was lots of sugar left (the brown in the sugar is pollen I added). They were slowly feeding off the existing sugar, and as I added in more pollen mix, a few took flight to … Continue reading »

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Mid February, and All Is Well

I went to check on the hive this morning, and saw some good signs. There were dozens of bees eating the sugar I had laid out “Mountain Camp” style, even though the temperature is about 43F. Since there was little to no wind, I took a minute to snap some pictures for posterity and to … Continue reading »

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Past the Winter Solstice

Call me cautious, but as a new beekeeper, I ordered a candy board late in the summer. Somehow I didn’t think I would have enough food for the bees over the winter. That’s a new candy board on top of the 20 lbs of sugar I keep in the garage, and the seemingly limitless supply … Continue reading »

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Pins and Needles

With fingers crossed, I could hear my heartbeat race as I approached the hive. Two seasons have come and gone while I cared or this hive, and I fear I have failed. In the beginning, my heart would be racing for fear of being stung, but those days are well behind me. Today, I just … Continue reading »

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Beekeeper Angst

I checked on the colony today, and I saw a bad sign. The bees had eaten all but a tiny piece of the candy from two weeks ago, leaving a piece the size roll of dimes. What worried me is I could see about 50 or so though the whole in the inner cover, and … Continue reading »

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Bees: Hot or Not?

I’ve, read a lot about how bees don’t really hibernate, but instead cluster around the queen, keeping her about 94F even on the coldest winter nights. And I’ve also read about nervous beekeepers that pace the floors mid-winter, wondering if the colony is still alive, but not wanting examine the inside the hive for fear … Continue reading »

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