Finger Lakes Beekeepers Club

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May Club Meeting

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What a difference a month makes! Spring appeared with a vengeance, and swarm season is already upon us. Check your hives!

Our next meeting will take place on Sunday, May 17 from 2-4pm, and we are back at the hives! Bring your bee suit and come out and work the Club hives under the watchful eyes of our veteran beekeepers.

There's a work party starting at 12pm! After this past winter, and a couple of extra purchases, we need to clean out the shed and get it into spit-spot shape. Peter and Shelley would appreciate the company, the strong backs, and the many hands. Shelley will bring cookies if you will!

The Club's bee package order is scheduled to arrive on Friday, May 15. If you don't already have directions, please contact Shelley or Peter for details. We've compiled a list of resources for package owners on the web site (see the article below). If you have questions after browsing the information, please ask on the list.

If you haven't yet filled out the FLBC Winter Loss Survey, please take a moment to do so.

See you at the hives!


New Package Pickup Date

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The package pickup date has moved to Friday, May 15. We will be in touch with all those who ordered packages through the club with specific instructions on when and where you'll be able to pick up your packages.

Make sure you have your equipment, including a feeder, ready to go for your bees. You'll need 1:1 syrup for your feeder -- this means mixing one pound of sugar into one pound of water. For reference, a gallon of water weighs approximately 8 pounds. A bag of sugar dissolved into two quarts of water will be about right -- you'll need to heat the water up to get the sugar to dissolve completely.

If you haven't installed a package before, here are some guides for you to start with. You will find plenty of additional information and videos by searching the internet for "installing bee packages" As you look over information, first look at the SOURCE of the information. For now, you probably want to rely on beekeeping supply companies, or well-known bee organizations for guidance.

You will find that in the myriad videos, many beekeepers wear minimal protection. The FLBC recommends that you wear as much (or as little) personal bee protection as you feel comfortable wearing. I'm not ashamed to say that I started out with full overalls, boots, and sheepskin gloves. It allowed me to focus on the bees in the hive, not the bees on my skin!

For a written, step-by-step guide on installing your packages, start with this guide from North Carolina State University's Extension department: or Mira Spivak at the Universty of Minnesota

This video from Kelley Beekeeping demonstrates this same method.

For an approach that doesn't involve as much shaking -- or as many bees in the air -- watch what the Hudson Valley Bee Supply recommends for the packages they create:

Spend time watching videos and learning about package installation. It's not hard, but it can be a daunting task when you've never handled bees before. And please feel free to connect with your mentor, or the club list, to field questions.

Last Updated on Sunday, 26 April 2015 14:55

FLBC Mentorship Program 2015

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We are now opening the 2015 FLBC mentorship program applications.

For this program to work, we need mentors!

If you have kept bees for three or more years, please consider helping out a new beekeeper. You do NOT need to have all of the answers -- we have a cadre of "mentors for mentors" if you run into a situation that's new to you, or beyond your skill set. (And then hey -- you learn something new too!) Most beekeepers starting out just need an extra boost of confidence, or some simple guidance for basic beekeeping tasks -- and you can provide that.

We will do our best to match up folks by geography. We may not always succeed, depending on your location, your hive type (Langstroth beekeepers may not have top bar hive experience), and demand.

If you would like to participate, please fill out this short survey. We are using this form to collect the right data for me to match up folks so that the program -- and your beekeeping -- succeeds.


Honey Marketing Guide

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If you sell, or want to sell, your honey to others to read this June 2014 publication from Cooperative Extension (pdf file). It answers many questions about processing, licensing, and labeling that you may have.


FLBC Calendar

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