Feed or Not To Feed Bees – Surviving The Dearth

Local flooding has has caused delays in nectar flows…

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When Building Beehives – If You Save Time, You Save Money

Beehives beg to be built from scarp lumber. With the outside dimensions of 16-1/4 x 19-7/8, even seemingly useless construction scarps can be used. I have built hives from old pallets. When people hear that, they immediately start posting comments about chemicals in pallet wood. Well I have built about 12 hives from pallets and…

How To Blueprint: 1×4 Deep Beehive Super

If anyone is interested, here is the Blueprint for my 1×4 deep beehive super. “A Goal without a plan is just a wish.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery (That’s is my new favorite quote!) As I mentioned in an earlier blog this super is built with 1×4’s and cost about $9.50 to build. Using nine 1×4’s…

How To Prevent Moth and Prepare for Winter

My last preparations before winter: #8 hardware cloth lined with dryer-sheets and covered with cedar chips. The whole feeder cost roughly $6 to build and fill. However, I believe it will prove brilliant on all fronts. The dryer sheets should catch the beetles – the cedar should deter moths – and both should insulate the…

How To Build Useful Hive Top Feeders

If you are one of the 1000’s here from Pinterest, checkout a few of my other Beehive Builds. Just click here. I’ve used a lot of feeders but my favorite one is Don “The Fat Bee Man” Kuchenmeister’s Hive Top Feeder. They are really easy to build and make checking on your bees super convenient. However, I…

Building A Better Beetle Trap

I truly hope that someone smarter than me is working on eradicating the Small Hive Beetles. “Build a better mouse trap and the world will beat a path to your door.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson However, until then, this is my latest attempt. I bought Catchmaster Home Pest Traps (glue traps for insects) 12 pack…

Bees, Beetles, and Mosquitoes… Oh My!

Maybe I’m cheap or maybe I’m frugal but either way, I have a hard time throwing out dilapidated supers. This is my last attempt to breathe life into my original boxes. The super in the picture is about 13 years old and has been badlytreated. My latest act of malevolence was when I dropped the…

We Harvest Honey When It’s Warm For A Reason

“I am the most incurably lazy devil that ever stood in shoe leather.” – Sherlock HolmesThe picture shows the stand I built for my honey extractor, so that I could fit the 5 gallon bucket under the bung hole. I used a 4×4 that was actually only 3.5″ tall. On top of that I used…

The Accidental Split – 2018 Harvest Continues

“We don’t make mistakes, just happy little accidents” – Bob Ross Last night, Noah and I, attempted (without success) to put the trailer tire back on the rim. I am convinced that someone crept out to my trailer in the middle of the night and put a larger thinner tire on the rim. Perhaps I’m…

Loss 13% – Time for Harvest

“It takes 15,000 casualties to train a major general.” – Ferdinand Foch. I lost 3 of my 23 hives to beetles. Actually, I lost 3 hives to neglect. While the beetles were the final cause, I think that the hives may have swarmed and left the remaining colonies too weak to defend themselves. I could…

My Cup Runs Over

My bees are flourishing like never before. 20 of the 22 hives at Dr. D’s place are packed with bees and honey. Two needed some help but still had bees in them. I am also happy to say, that I didn’t see a single beetle yesterday – not that I looked too hard for them….

Wedding at Dr. D’s

My energy is split between what I have to do and what I want to do. However, it is absolutely impossible to devote time to everything. Family, work, and sleep are non-negotiable. So I am left to juggle downtime, beekeeping, writing, and inventing. While it sounds like a rationalization of my shortcomings, the truth is…

The Mating Sign?

Let me start this blog with a question: What does the “Mating Sign” look like? All 22 hives at Dr. D’s have bees in them. It has been two weeks since I made my last hive splits. There are lot of good reasons why I was too busy to get out to the apiary sooner…

With my shoes off, I can count to 20

“Oh heart, such disorganization!” Sylvia Plath Well, I have split 6 hives into 22 in just a couple of months. This has been the best year by far. This will be my last splits until after I harvest honey. Though, if the bees continue to do as well as they are doing, I should have…

2018 The Future Looks Bright

“Never pet a burning dog,” – movie quote from, A Good Year. I do my best to keep this blog purely focused on my beekeeping but something strange happened last week that I don’t want to forget – so indulge me and then I’ll tell about my extraordinary beekeeping year thus far. Or just skip…