March, 2019 | Buzz Beekeeping Supplies

Archive for March 2019

Honey Bee Swarm : Are they Dangerous?

Honey Bee Swarm – Encountering swarming bees can cause a panic to most people. However, a honey bee swarm is a natural and amazing part of life. It is a natural process in the life of honey bees. Non-beekeepers would want it removed especially when the honey bee swarm is just somewhere in their property, but it is exciting for beekeepers to see one and maybe even want to captuhoney_bee_swarmre one themselves.

Why Honey Bees Swam?

Swarming happens when a large group of honey bees creates a new colony by leaving the one they had previously established. They leave their old colony which is a normal and natural method in response to crowding within the colony. Honey Bee Swarms usually emerges in late spring and early summer time during the warmer hours of the day.

A honey bee swarm usually contains one queen bee, a few drones, and of course hundreds to thousands of worker bees. They briefly fly around and cluster on shrubs or tree limbs or other objects while scouting bees fly around to find a new nest site. Finding a new site, depending on thehoney_bee_swarm weather, may take an hour or until a few days. Once a suitable site is found, the cluster breaks up fly towards it. They usually swarm on a tree, shrub, house

Are Honey Bee Swarms Dangerous?

In most circumstances, they are not. They feed prior to swarming which reduces the probability of stinging. Another thing, bees that are away from their nest also are less defensive making it unlikely for them to sting, unless of course they’re provoked.

What to do when there is a honey bee swarm?

For non-beekeepers: You don’t need to do anything. Leave them be, keep a safe distance, and patiently wait for them to move since swarms are only temporary.  If you know a beekeeper, you can give it to them and have the swarm relocated for you or call authorities such as pest control operators, etc.

Honey Bee Swarm : Are they Dangerous?

 

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Basics for Beginning Beekeeping

Beginning BeekeepingDo you want to be a beekeeper too? Here is how to be one:

1. Prepare Your Hives and Beekeeping Equipment

There are beekeeping Hive Starter Kits available online or in your local beekeeping store that you can check out. There are different ones out there, so it’s always good to do your own research or ask your mentor or a friendly veteran beekeeper on what works best.

2. Order Bees or Capture a Swarm of Beesbeginning_beekeeping

For starters, it’s a good idea to start with ordering your bees in your nearby bee supplier than capturing a swarm for your first hive. It is possible though to lure a swarm into your hive using techniques that will attract them like lemongrass oil, or maybe you know someone who has no trouble capturing swarms, but there’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to find a swarm in an instant. Start by ordering your bees for your first hive, then maybe capture a swarm of bees for your next hive.

3. Do More Research, read articles, read books, attend beekeeping classes

After reading and learning, you may not become an instant expert, but you’ll definitely become more in love with beekeeping and have more knowledge and confidence to be the best beekeeper you can be.

4. Find and Join a Beekeeping Club in your areabeginning_beekeeping

Beekeeping clubs welcome new beekeepers with open arms all the time! Don’t be scared to join one and get to meet friendly and passionate beekeepers. They have regular meetings and offer classes to help every beekeeper to improve.

5. Don’t Stop Learning

Once you have gotten the basics and have everything lined up, just keep on learning & remember that it’s okay to make some mistakes. You’ll get more insight on how to be a better beekeeper from learning from your mistakes!

Good luck and Happy Beekeeping!

Basics for Beginning Beekeeping

 

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An Overview Guide for Urban Beekeeping

Urban BeekeepingIf you ask any beekeeper, they would really say that beekeeping has its fun and rewarding moments.  If you live in the city and want to take up beekeeping as a hobby, there are urban beekeeping tips that might be able to turn your beekeeping experience more enjoyable.

Urban Beekeeping Tips

1. Know if the city you’re in allows you to keep bees.

Read and learn about your area’s laws, rules and regulations about beekeeping. Cities like New York City, Chicago, and Detroit allow beekeeping, but there are still some urban areas that don’t allow it. Avoid getting your hives confiscated and avoid paying fines. Of course, if beekeeping is allowed in your area, make sure you have it on your own property and get consent from your landlord or whoever it is you need to get permission from.

2. Find a proper spot for your bees.urban_beekeeping

Bees need water so its best to place them near a water source or you can provide a bee watering station for them. Also, keep them in a place where there is always under the shade with a windbreak. A space that deflects heat is far better environment for bees.

3. Keep in mind your neighbors.

Be a thoughtful neighbor and beekeeper and inform your neighbors about your beekeeping ideas. Some may not agree with your plans and protest against it for some reason, but you can try and sweeten the deal by promising them some honey as a gift after harvesting.

4. Order equipment and hives first before the bees.

Prepare everything you need and get it all ready for your bees to live in. the best time to order from apiaries is from January to February. If you buy later than that, there might be a chance that you won’t be able to get any bees.

5. Start caring for your bees & always research more about beekeeping.

Beekeeping takes dedication to keep them healthy and well. To know about bee healthcare, you can always search the internet, watch Youtube videos, and you can even attend beekeeping classes.

Goodluck and happy urban beekeeping!

An Overview Guide for Urban Beekeeping

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Backyard Beekeeping Practices to be a Good Neighbor

Backyard Beekeeping – Backyard beekeepers should not only think about the conditions of their bees, but they should also be concerned about their neighbors. We should be respectful to our neighbors and we don’t want to irritate them in any way with our bees. So here are some good practices to be a thoughtful backyard beekeeper to the neighbors:

Backyard Beekeeping Practices to be a Good Neighbor

1. Read Local Laws & News About Backyard Beekeeping

Learn whether or not your local and state allows backyard keeping or if there are any limitations and prohibitions if such is allowed. Some rules would usually regulate the number of hives allowed to be in your property and/or the distance of how far away it should be from your neighbors. In most places, there aren’t really any laws restricting backyard beekeeping but it’s always better to backyard_beekeepingmake sure to avoid any problems.

2. Strategically Position Your Hive Opening Away from Neighbors

Your bees will always be flying in and out of their hives all the time and some bees might end up flying in your neighbor’s home. To avoid that, as much as possible, keep the opening of the hive facing towards your own home. You don’t want your neighbors to have any unwanted bees buzzing around their property.

3. Alter the Flight Pattern of your Bees

Bees have a flight pattern and you can alter it in a way that they won’t fly towards your neighbors’ property. As a backyard beekeeper, you can plan it by using your fences, screens, and/or hedges near their hive opening to force the bees to fly in a different direction. They can fly high & steep when taking off and landing.

4. Keep a Bee Watering Station and keep it filled

Bees need water as much as people do for survival. When your bees run out of water, they will resourcefully search for their own water supply and might end up buzzing around your neighbor’s swimming pool or someplace else. Plus, pools in homes usually have chemicals that could harm your bees. It’s better to always have water available for your bees.backyard_beekeeping

5. Keep Bees that aren’t Aggressive

This is the most important for backyard beekeepers to keep in mind. Gentle bees are highly preferred especially for neighborhoods with a more crowded population. The gentle bees may attack but they attack only when they find the need to defend themselves and their hive. Aggressive bees are those which start attacking you at the watering hole or start dive bombing your head when you’re on the other side of the yard. Keep aggressive bees away from your family, neighbors, and yourself.

By being a backyard beekeeper, it is also always important to be mindful that the neighbors might have a serious allergy towards bees. You may find some time to educate your neighbors and team up to add more ways to completely keep bees from flying astray in their property.

Some neighbors may even feel intrigued with your beekeeping and might want to even help a bit by planting plants that attract bees. It will be a win-win for you and your neighbors. And of course, don’t forget to share your blessings! Share some of your harvest to your good & close neighbors.

Backyard Beekeeping Practices to be a Good Neighbor

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How to Extract Honey With a Hand Crank Honey Extractor

How to Extract Honey With a Hand Crank Honey Extractor – For most beekeepers, there’s nothing better than extracting honey from their own hives. Most owners collect at least 2-5 gallons of honey using hand crank honey extractor everytime they harvest. How do they do this?

Step 1. Protection.

The first thing you need to do is to ensure that you are well-protected. ALWAYS wear a bee suit with a hood when you’re planning on harvesting the honey from your bee hive. Gloves and a suit with an attached mesh hood is recommended.Hand_Crank_Honey_Extractor

Step 2. Smoking

Smoking is one technique in keeping the bees calm while you harvest the honey. Some beekeepers use grass, twigs, or any piece of paper in the canister of the smoker and put the lighted canister into the hives as they open the hive. Some beekeepers think that smoking the bees could hurt them when it actually does not. All it does is to keep the bees calm long enough for the beekeepers to extract the frames without being attacked.

Step 3. Pulling the Frames Out

Now, this is the tricky part, though it can also be simple depending on the condition of the hive. In this step, you would need a tool like a hive separator to pull the frames apart. There are times when the comb could stick into the frames which could make it harder to lift it out in one piece – that’s the tricky part.

Step 4. Extracting the Honey Using the Hand Crank Honey Extractor

Hand_Crank_Honey_ExtractorOnce you’ve secured the frames, take them as far away from the hive as possible to avoid the bees from flying towards it. Once you’re far enough, use a hot knife to get the wax off. Then, it’s time to put it in the hand crank honey extractor.

A hand crank honey extractor is a like a spinning device that uses centrifugal force to extract the honey from the frames. Now, you need to spin the crankshaft handle in your extractor to ooze the honey out. Do this with the other frames you have collected from the beehives. Don’t worry if you don’t see any honey oozing out for the first minute of spinning the crankshaft of your honey extractor. It usually takes a few minutes before you can see any from coming out.

Step 5. Filter

It’s also important to filter your honey. This will help remove any beeswax that’s been extracted out of the frame as well. Your honey will not immediately come out of the filter so you will have to wait for about 1-2 hours for all of it to come out.

How to Extract Honey With a Hand Crank Honey Extractor

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Backyard Beekeeping Guide for Backyard Beekeeper Beginners

Backyard Beekeeping Guide for Backyard Beekeeper Beginners – If you’ve been thinking about starting beekeeping hobby or business, then you probably want to read ahead. This article will explain the basics about the raising bees. Here are the things you need to do if you want to become a backyard beekeeper:

1. Do Your Own Research Before Diving In

This is one of the most essential steps when starting a beekeeping hobby. The start of being an excellent backyard beekeeper is by looking at books and information which could give you an idea on how it works. Read as much as you can before you set up your bee colony so that when the time comes, you’ll be well-versed with what to do and not to do in caring for them.

2. Order Your Beesbackyard_beekeeping

A piece of advice: Don’t order your bees online. Ordering them through mail puts you in a high risk of receiving unhealthy bees. Chances are, the bees could have lost their strength due to the

stress they have been exposed in while being shipped or they’re not properly taken care of by the seller.

3. Set Up the Beehive

Bees typically build their own hive in a trunk of a tree when they’re out in the wild. However, since you’re planning on being a backyard beekeeper, you have to provide the foundations for them. A man-made hive can also make it easier for you to harvest their honey when the time comes.

4. Learn The Process of Honey Making

The importance of learning the process of how bees make honey is crucial in beekeeping. Since you have to order supplies for your harvest, you need to be able to learn how the bees make their honey so that you will know what tools to buy.

Basically, bees fly on to flowers and using their special sensory motors, they are able to locate a flower where they can collect nectar and pollen. They then go back to the hive and pass on the nectar mouth to mouth with the working bees assigned in the hive until it loses about 70% of its moisture. These are then stored in individual cells where it’s stored for their own consumption or for the backyard_beekeepingbackyard beekeeper.

5. Familiarize Beekeeping Tasks

It helps to familiarize yourself with the necessary steps to take in taking care of your bees during the change in the seasons. For instance, spring is the most productive season for bees which means it’s during this time that you will collect a maximum yield of honey. On the other hand, while bees still produce honey during the winter season, it isn’t as abundant. Spring is also the best time to lay your brood and increase your colony size.

6. Keep on Learning

There are always a lot of techniques that’s being discovered on how to properly care for your bees and increase their honey production. Attend seminars, read the latest bee research, or try anything to keep your ideas updated. If you stop learning about how to improve care, then you’re definitely doing it wrong.

 

Backyard Beekeeping Guide for Backyard Beekeeper Beginners

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Pros and Cons of Raising Bees for Honey

Pros and Cons of Raising Bees for HoneyStarting a new hobby is easy. But with just like everything else, learning the basics of raising bees for honey takes time and a lot of patience since there are a lot of things you need to consider.

Pros

There are a lot of benefits when you take up beekeeping as a hobby and/or business. Here’s some of them:

– They Produce Honey

This is one of the most common reasons why people want to take up beekeeping. Raising bees for honey means that you get to have fresh honey ready at your back yard – one which you’re sure that’s organic and free of artificial flavoring. Each bee can produce up to half a teaspoon of honey; imagine how much honey a colony with thousands of bees can produce.Raising_Bees_for_Honey

– Healthier Crops

Plants mostly rely on bees to propagate. The bees are an excellent plant pollinator. A lot of people has expressed that raising bees has made their landscapes healthier and they noticed that their plants and trees were producing bigger fruits.

– Wax

Bees also produce wax which they make into wax comb. There are a lot of uses for wax including cosmetics and creams.

Cons

Here are the downsides of raising bees for honey.

– Stings are Popular Among Honeybees

A bee sting can be very dangerous especially if you’re allergic to insect bites and stings. However, those with beekeeping business have developed immunity for the bee venom overtime.Raising_Bees_for_Honey

– Diseases in Bees

There are a lot of diseases that lead to the decline in the bee population. No matter how much effort you put in, there are just times when your beehive just won’t stay healthy.

– The First Year Can be Tough

It takes at least 3 years for the bees to produce a significant amount of honey. So you can’t really sexpect a productive first year for your beekeeping business.

Pros and Cons of Raising Bees for Honey

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All About Capturing a Bee Swarm

All About Capturing a Bee SwarmNo matter how much you take care of your bees, they will always end up leaving the hive together with their queen in order to create a new, independent hive. During this time, before your bee population gets smaller and smaller, you would need to find a new swarm of bees to replace the old one.

Steps to Take When Capturing a Bee Swarm

When you notice that your bees have started to become lesser and lesser, it’s an indication that you have to capture a new hive. Say that you saw a swarm somewhere near your house and you want to capture it with to replenish your beehive, here are the steps you can take:

1. Assess the Situationcapture bee swarm

Before you start cutting off the swarm, it’s important that you assess the situation first before taking action. If it’s just within an arm’s reach, don’t hesitate. However, if it’s up above a tree branch where you’d need a ladder to capture it and whether or not it’s dangerous or if it’s worth the risk or not.

When planning on capturing a bee swarm, you would need to do it fast since swarms usually don’t settle around one location for long. You also have to make sure that you’ll be capturing a genuine swarm and not an established hive already since it can be more difficult to relocate.

2. Prepare Your Tools

Wearing the right kind of protection is vital when you’re capturing bees. Although they can be submissive, it’s still important to keep yourself protected should the situation turn for the worst. The most important gears to wear are bee suit, gloves, and a veil to protect your face and head.

bee swarmWhen you’re ready to capture the swarm, you would also need a box to keep the bees in to get them ready to be transported to their new home.  For instance, a breathable cardboard box will do.

3. Secure the Queen Bee

A colony of bees won’t survive without their queen. One of the goals of capturing a bee swarm is to get the majority of it and the only way you can do this is if you catch the queen with them as well. The honeybees need their queen to successfully establish the hives.

In capturing the bees, if you see the bees hanging in a low branch, you can easily place a box underneath the branch and cut it off using a pair of clippers. However, if it’s in a larger branch, you can start shaking the branch slowly while holding the box underneath it. If you can’t get the majority of them using the previous steps, go in and transfer the bees to the box by your hands.

4. Take Them Home

Once you’re satisfied with the amount you’ve captures, it’s time to get the in their new homes. After transferring them to their new hive, you have to give them at least a week to regroup and acclimatize to the new environment. It’s also the time where the bees start creating a new comb without disruptions.

All About Capturing a Bee Swarm

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6 Things You Need To Know About Organic Beekeeping

Organic Beekeeping – If you’re new to organic beekeeping, there’s still so much that you have to learn. Keeping a bee farm on your backyard isn’t easy since there are a lot of things to consider. Before you go into any decisions, it’s better to have an idea about organic beekeeping so you can know what to expect.

Location is Important

When you’re considering on taking on the organic beekeeping hobby, the first thing you need to consider is the location where you’ll be putting your bees. For instance, bees have a lot of needs. organic beekeepingFirst, they need to be able to have easy access to fresh water to aid in their honey production. Secondly, they need to be away from traffic. And thirdly, they need to be placed where they can receive a considerable amount of sunlight – not too much but also not too little. If you live in a farm, you also have to look out for places where pesticides have been sprayed since it can damage the bee’s system and lead to their death.

You Don’t Have to Be Afraid of The Bees

Of course, you’d need to be wearing PPEs such as veil, gloves, and a full suit to avoid being stung. Since the bees’ instincts include attacking possible dangers to their colony, naturally they would attack you. The key to achieving the perfect technique in handling bee colonies according to an expert is to approach the colony gently as careful as you can to avoid agitating the bees. Provoking and overworking the bees can lead them to attack you.

Don’t Order the Bees Through Mail

Ordering bees online can’t assure you that you’ll be receiving a healthy set of bees. When you decide to start an organic beekeeping business, you need to be responsible enough to know where your bees come from. The last thing you want is to receive a set of unhealthy honey bees in your mail which you can no longer return.

Don’t Expect to Harvest Honey Immediately

organic_beekeepingYou can’t expect bees to produce honey right away. In fact, it may even take 2 years for them to produce a maximum amount of honey. This is because the bees need to build their colonies first and you have to wait for it to strengthen and grow. If the season is good, then you can expect to harvest a little bit the following year.

Never Use Pesticides Near Your Hive

Experienced beekeepers know better than using pesticides to kill parasites that could destroy their bee colonies. When you think about it, if these things are designed to get rid of other insects, then what’s to say that it can’t kill your colony, too?

Learn from a Mentor

The best thing to do when starting a beekeeping hobby is to learn from someone who has had years of experience on the field. Once you decide to pursue it, you have to keep the passion burning so that it will be a success. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll eventually be able to identify solutions to common bee problems.

6 Things You Need To Know About Organic Beekeeping

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Why are Bees Disappearing?

Bees Disappearing – While delivering bees to keepers may not be a postal worker’s most favourite thing to do, still, they know that they have to deliver it. Day by day, keepers face the problem of most of their bees disappearing. They leave to hunt for food but unfortunately, for some reason, the bees fail to come back.

Why are Bees Disappearing? What’s Happening?

Since 2006, the country was faced with a huge decline on the population of honeybees – a phenomenon that was termed Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). This also caused a huge decline in the Bees_Disappearingeconomy as the number of crops which comprised a significant part of every American’s diet. Since the start of the bees’ disappearances, bee keepers had to order more of the bees in order to replace those they have lost.

For years, the cause of the disappearances remains a mystery to both scientists and bee keepers. However, they believe that the CCD could have been caused by a lot of factors. Initially, the scientists thought it was due to the rapid growth in the population of Varroa mites then after a while they suspected pesticides, as well.

Now, they have start suspecting these three for the cause of CCD and with these three’s combination, the population of bees has decline three-folds, as well. In addition, these are some of the other factors that could lead to bees disappearing and decline:

Pesticides

First, the bees are exposed to pesticides that have been sprayed in the plants they pollinate in. This exposure then leads to the weakening of the bee’s health leaving them too weak to survive the flight home. Sometimes, the pesticides that are sprayed near their colonies that are intentionally for the Varroa mites affects the bees as well which can damage the bees neurologic functioning.

Climate Change

Moreover, the rapid change in the planet’s overall climate has also contributed to the reason for bees disappearing. Constant flooding and droughts can lead to the decline in the availability of flowers which is what bees depend on, mostly. It’s simple, really. When plants begin to decline, so does the bee population.

NoiseBees_Disappearing

Another factor is the noise. One reason for why bees fail to go back home is the fact that they might get lost on their way home because of too much noise which can cause them to forget their way back home.

Air Pollution

Air pollution is another serious threat that bees and bee keepers face. As if the other factors weren’t enough, the issue of scent being lost along the way could also cause these bees to get lost as they buzz from places to places. Bees follow a particular trail of scent that leads them to food, when the car smoke and other pollution combine, the smell of the chemicals that the flower releases gets lost and bees then miss the chance of bringing food home leaving the colony hungry.

What it Means

The loss of bees can have so much effect on the economy and the lives of people. Aside from the fact that there will be more demand for honey, it can also affect other aspects in the agricultural world as well. Since most of the plants depend on pollination to grow and expand, lesser bees means lesser chances for them to survive and propagate.

Why are Bees Disappearing?

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