Snow! Managing packages in winter weather.

This is a photo of our yard this morning, Tuesday. Package pickups were Saturday. Beekeepers are all concerned about managing bees in winter weather. Here is a quick update about managing package bees in the snow. (Nuc customers, watch for pickup information coming soon!) In cold weather, bees cluster together to stay warm. They consume […]

Managing Packages in Cold Weather

Managing Packages in Cold Weather The Honey Company   Saturday is forecasted to be sunny, but we’ve seen some heavy winter weather this week. Here is some information about how to manage your bees in the cold.   Installing packages in cold weather can be an advantage because bees are less likely to fly away […]

Screened Bottom Board Opinion

Above photo credit to Val Wright Q: I purchased a screened bottom board last year to help with a mite count, but I never got around to putting it in my hive. Recently I have been reading several posts on how beneficial it is to use in the hot summer months for additional air circulation. I […]

Queenless problems?

What a great spring! This year we brought in 770 packages of bees and are excited to see your beekeeping successes! In the packages, we guarantee that the queen bee will be alive and healthy when customers take them home. But there are some rare customer error problems that can happen with the queen. Hopefully knowing about […]

Tips on Using a Smoker

As beekeepers, we often carry around a hot canister of live coals, otherwise known as a bee smoker. We use a bee smoker regularly in our operation. Here are a few tips on getting the best use of the smoker and smoker fuel without causing a grass fire. Once, at a bee pickup, a customer […]

Queenless Hive

We have received multiple questions about queenless hives lately. When this happens, we usually need to know the following. These are also questions beekeepers can ask themselves each time they inspect the hive to keep it thriving. Do you see eggs, larvae, or pupae of all ages? Do you know how to recognize eggs and larvae? […]

Why go foundationless?

Photo credit for the above photo goes to Valerie Wright! Thanks for sharing this with us! Over the past 5 years, we have switched our operation to foundationless beekeeping. This decision came gradually, but matches our natural beekeeping philosophies. This post will talk about our deciding factors. Work by Michael Bush has influenced our decision […]

Plum Bloom on Beeswax

We received a great question and beautiful photos from Rachelle (below) and Valerie (above). The comb in Rachelle’s hive has dark wax with a thin layer of white on top. She was wondering what the white layer is and if it is cause for concern.     Answer: This white coating is called “Plum Bloom.” The bloom is […]

My hive died this winter. What happened?

Lately we have been receiving several questions about dead hives. If your hive did not make it, we are sad. It is always a bummer when bees die! We are working tirelessly to find ways to keep bees healthier, but the beekeeping industry is not on top of bee diseases. . . yet! While we can’t […]

Beekeeping Bills

Featured image (above) is from healthsciences.utah.edu.  There are 2 bills about beekeeping this session at the Utah legislature that will come up in committee this week. One of them (HB0115) makes slight modifications to make it easier for hobbiests to keep bees. The other (HB0315) includes radical changes to current beekeeping laws, including making it more difficult for […]

Foulbrood by Dr. Sandra Burnett

We have been corresponding with Dr. Burnett about Foulbrood and wanted to post what she said about it, especially with the current proposed honeybee bill in the Utah House of Representatives. Here are two emails. The first is one I sent to her with some questions and the second is her response. She gave permission for […]

How to measure cell size

Wondering if your natural comb bees are small cell or large cell size? Here’s how to measure. Harvest some uncapped worker-sized comb or honey comb. (Drone comb is naturally larger than worker comb. Most comb in the hive is worker comb.) Using a metric ruler, place “Zero” on the side wall of a cell. Cout […]

Featured Queen Bee: Queen Windy

The queen featured is a daughter of Queen Windy, a Cordovan Italian. On the way back from California package pickup, Queen Windy’s cage was on the cold, windy side of the truck coming through Wyoming. The workers clustered on the other side of the package cage, behind the can of syrup, leaving her exposed. We […]

Featured Queen Bee: Junie Bee

Junie Bee is a 3-year old New World Carniolan. We purchased her from Strachan Apiaries, which is part of Sue Coby’s project to collect genetics from all over the world. Junie Bee is survivor stock from 2012, a major drought year. Carniolans are known for reducing their numbers (cluster size) when there is a shortage of […]

University of Minnesota Bee Lab

Today I visited the University of Minnesota Extension Bee Lab website after a long break. New to me are the beginning beekeeping videos on THIS PAGE. We’ve attached the videos here for your convenience. Everything they do is awesome and sustainable. I hope you learn something! I know I did!  

Cutting Queen Cells from the Middle Bar Frame

Here’s another video blog post about using extra queen cells to make splits. If you like the genetics of your current hive, this is a great way to save money by raising your own queens with minimal effort. See the beekeeper use his hive tool to cut out the queen cups and then clip them […]

Worker Bee Emerging from Her Cell

Dale Wright and his amazing wife Valerie just sent these photos in sequence of a worker bee emerging from her cell. I thought I’d share it here so you can see it too! It’s amazing to see how bee biology works from these pictures. Here is the frame from which she will emerge. It is […]

Feral Queen Customer Response

Here is what one customer said about the feral queen and her hive this year. “I wanted to share some photos from my hive inspection on June 13. Those foundationless frames are awesome! I had so many people telling me that using deep foundationless frames wouldn’t work–that the bees wouldn’t draw them out well — […]

Looking for Eggs in the Hive

We have been receiving loads of questions about checking for eggs this week. Here are some thoughts about eggs. Why do I need to check for eggs? The reason you need to look for eggs is to establish if there is a queen and if she is laying eggs. Just because there are no eggs present […]

Q&A Top Bar Hive Replacement

Question: I currently have a top bar hive and am looking to some how move it to a hive that requires less maintenance. A friend recommended you guys- I’ve seen her hives and they are great! I’m looking for hive recommendations and any help you can offer- I’m located in Spanish Fork. Answer: We recommend a […]