September 2018 Beekeeping Notes

Hardin County Kentucky Beekeepers AssociationThe fall nectar flow has started and will continue through mid-September in many cases. There is a good likelihood that you might get a nice honey harvest of fall honey. By mid-September, you should have removed all supers from your hives. It time to conduct a good hive inspection to check for a good laying queen, eggs and brood. Egg laying will have taper off and there is probably little to no drone cells any more. Also time to evaluate the strength of each hive and consider combining weak hives with stronger hives. During the hive inspection, check to see if the hives have plenty of stores going into the fall and winter. If they do not then consider feeding your hives with 2:1 sugar water through October. “DO NOT OVER FEED”. It is also a critical time to check for Varroa mites; they tend to build up in September during the warmest days. So it is important to treat in September for Varroa Mites. If you have not placed entrance reducers on your hives, then it is time to do so, and also consider mouse guards as may be appropriate. Consider putting out Bug Jugs. They are great for collecting up moths, wasp, yellow jackets, flies, and other flying inspects/pests. Arizona Tea jugs are excellent. Cut a 1 inch square hole in the upper face of the jug opposite of the handle. Fill with 1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of vinegar, 1 banana peel, and warm water --about 1/2 to 3/4 full but well below the cut hole. Hang jugs nears your hives. One jugs per 3 to 4 hives. They really work. Good from thru October.

HCBA Works the Kentucky State Fair Honey Booth

Hardin County Kentucky Beekeepers AssociationHCBA members support Grayson County Beekeepers Association and the Kentucky State Beekeepers Association by working the Honey Booth at the August 2018 State Fair.

 

It was a great team effort providing free samples of honey along with selling honey, honey sticks, honey filled hard candies, beeswax, cosmetic items, and the opportunity to roll beeswax candles.

 

August 2018 Beekeeping Notes

August is usually a hot dry period of time and the bees will need water. Some beekeepers feed a little 1:1 sugar water to the bees at least once a week until the Fall nectar flow begins in late August. This is also the time when there is the biggest threat for robbing events to take place. It only takes a minor issue like dripping sugar water on the ground near a hive or leaving a hive open to long with honey supers still on to incite an incident. It is a good idea to place entrance reducers on your hives and to close off any other possible entrance accesses. August is the beginning of the Fall/Winter preparation period for your beehives. Weak hives need to be combined with stronger hives or be re-queened preferably with a strong Nuc. Take care to watch for increases in Varroa mite populations, small hive beetles and the dreaded wax moths. All hives should be treated for Varroa mites in mid to late July or August. The population of the hives can only manage and protect a reasonable space. Too much room in a hive, regardless of the population, can result in hive beetles and wax moths moving in and taking over a hive. This can happen rather quickly. So consider removing extra supers and/or mostly empty supers especially off weaker hives. The Fall nectar flow generally starts mid to late August and ends around mid-September.