Thursday, May 29, 2014

Great Start for Honeybees!

This season has been either the best or next best season I've seen for honeybees in the past 11 years! I am performing complete hive checks now every 10-11 days. All six of my colonies are doing fantastic. Don't forget, June is the "swarming month" so keep getting rid of any queen cells. If you think you are missing your queen, one of my students ordered an extra so please let us know asap if you are interested in requeening.
I hope you are all enjoying working with and watching your honeybees. Just keep them out of your bonnett!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


So I've removed exterior hive insulation twice and replaced it twice since we've had some cold evenings of late. I decided to wait until June 1st to pull the insulation for the rest of the season. I've also been changing my entrance reducers morning and night. At night I change the entrance to the half-inch notch and in the morning (after it gets about 40* or warmer) I pull the entrance reducers all the way out. Congratulations to Sterling Muth who successfully re-queened his hive!

Monday, May 12, 2014

2014-2015 Science-Based Art Classes

Primary Science Explorers 10AM-12PM

Read, Write, Publish 12:30-2:30PM

Primary Science Explorers  10AM - 12PM
Soar Through the Solar System 3:30-5:30PM

Creative Essay Writing 10AM-12PM
Human Body 3-5PM

Illustration and Graphic Design 11AM - 2PM

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


Today I saw dandelions at UAF!!! So I fed my bees for the last time today since I have drawn-out comb. Beekeepers who have mostly bare foundation should keep feeding sugar water to get their frames drawn-out with comb.  

Monday, May 5, 2014

Jack Frost is Back!

Since Jack Frost is back lurking around the Interior of Alaska, we need to be cautious to keep our honeybees warm. I re-insulated all my hives again and suggest you do the same. Also, when ever temperatures get to 50*, top off your sugar water.

Changing Spring Entrance Reducers, Adding Bee Space & Hive Checks

Entrance Changes:
When the weather dropped off tonight, I put entrance reducers back into the hives and set them to the smallest entrance. When it warms up again, depending on the temperatures, I'll set them to the medium-sized entrance or perhaps even remove them completely again.

Adding Bee Space: Beekeepers who have mostly drawn-out frames could add another brood box now since we are having an amazingly fast pollen build-up year. This would give the bees more space for brood and pollen stores. If the weather keeps going like it has been, we may have an early honeyflow which would change the beekeeping schedule a bit. If that's the case, I will be updating the calendar here on this blog.

Regular Hive Checks:  From here on out, after confirming you have a strong queen in each hive, complete hive checks should be done every 10-12 days.

Do You Need More Beekeeping Equipment?
If anyone is in need of beekeeping equipment, one of our beekeeping kind is headed down to Big Lake. Fred Tuttle:  347-0651

Saturday, May 3, 2014


Hi Folks, What a GREAT start to our season!! I removed all my inner and outer insulation last evening and today am removing my entrance reducers. If the weather drops off cold again (below 40*) at night, I will put entrance reducers and out insulation back on the hives. No need to offer pollen patties at this time so freeze any extra pollen patties you might still have laying around to use when we get a rainy week later in the season. I have been removing a few queen cells so as long as your queen(s) is/are laying well with full patterns of brood (you should have several or more frames (both sides) with eggs, larva and pupa in each hive), you are in business for a promising honey season!! If you think you don't see any queen evidence, it's time to have someone help you determine if you need a new queen. I have a few extra queens. They are $25 each. Stay tuned for a few pictures with explanations!