TedsWoodworking Plans and Projects

Smoker Fuels for Beekeepers

The practice of using smoke to calm a beehive is probably as old as the idea of robbing a bunch of stinging insects. However, no one really understood how it works until the 20th century and we still don't fully understand. Thanks to science, we do know that smoke covers a pheromone that the bees release when they are squished, or after they've stung something, called an alarm pheromone. This … [Read more...]

The Queen Excluder

If used properly a queen excluder can be quite helpful. When you harvest honey there wouldn't be a need to check each frame for brood first. Just get the bees out of the supers, which is the hard part, and then take the supers. Since the queen and brood are supposed to be in the brood chamber, you could harvest honey almost worry free. However, there are some people who would call it a honey … [Read more...]

Beekeeping Associations – Get Involved

I was privileged to attend the NCSBA (North Carolina State Beekeeper's Association) meeting this month. In 3 days I learned more about bees than I have time to write! First of all, that opinions concerning colony management practices are just as diverse as beekeeper's personalities. On a more serious note, I also learned that pesticide residues in wax are crippling our bee's immune systems. Also, … [Read more...]

Installing Your First Package of Bees

Many people start their beekeeping journey by ordering a package of bees. This package includes 3lbs of bees and a queen. It will need a little more TLC than a full colony or a nuc since the bees will have to build their hive from the very beginning. The queen will have to be released from her cage and establish her reign, the package of bees will have to build comb and prepare the hive, and the … [Read more...]

Dealing With a Dead Hive

It's spring time again! Which means flowers, pollen, drones, honey, firing up the smoker, and cleaning up dead outs. Hives die over the winter for various reasons, the most common being starvation. The weather gets so cold that they cannot leave their warm cluster to get food or they die trying. When this happens you will usually see dead bee bodies sometimes “frozen” in the cluster, or piled up … [Read more...]

Different Methods of Fall and Winter Feeding

Did you know that freezing temperatures could cause a hive to starve to death, even if there is food sitting right above them? Hunger isn't always strong enough motivation for cozy little bees, which is one reason why we should provide our bees with easily accessible food stores. Ideally, you can leave a super or two of honey on a hive and they will over winter on it just fine. Each hive … [Read more...]