Hivelights – August 2017

Posted by on Aug 5, 2017 in Hivelights | Comments Off on Hivelights – August 2017

What a difference a month makes! The western heat wave has dominated and any rain has been insignificant. The flourishing crops of June, if still standing, have withered in the heat and flower nectar has almost dried up.  Bees are foraging far and wide now, but at least pollen is still readily available for brood. Our honey harvesting starts next week – and then we are begging for that precious commodity – rain. Wonder of wonders, our store observation hive finally swarmed! The queen is now 3 years old and still very productive, so it was ‘packed hive’ last Monday afternoon when she decided...

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What to do with a Local Bee Swarm

Posted by on Jul 18, 2017 in Hivelights | Comments Off on What to do with a Local Bee Swarm

Swarms  happen when bees are trying to find a new home. While on this search for the perfect place, the queen will get tired so she will settle somewhere with majority of the bees clustered around her. Sometimes the swarm lands on trees, the ground, or even on cars. These swarms can look scary, but are relatively harmless. The bees are not yet territorial since they are effectively homeless, so they are of little danger to people around them. That being said, please still keep your distance. Please note: Chinook Honey Company is NOT able to provide swarm removal services.   Bees are...

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Hivelights July 2017

Posted by on Jun 30, 2017 in Hivelights | Comments Off on Hivelights July 2017

July 1st – a time to celebrate for many reasons! Canada’s 150th birthday is one- we are so lucky to live in this amazing country. There’s many special events to enjoy and if you want to relax and learn about bees or mead, take in one of our special free tours this Saturday (July 1st). The Alberta bee scene is another reason to celebrate. The great June weather has given crops a super boost and our bees are wallowing in nectar from alfalfa, clover, sainfoin and even an experimental patch of buckwheat. The honey flow is going full force and it’s a good time of year to...

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Hivelights June 2017

Posted by on Jun 3, 2017 in Hivelights | Comments Off on Hivelights June 2017

May was a great month to be nurturing our New Zealand honey bee packages and young nucleus hives. The warm weather and plentiful dandelion crop has given them a big boost. The abundant food and heat encourages the newly installed queens to lay eggs prolifically. Many people don’t realize that bees also need a good source of water. Since their bodies are mostly water (like us) they need to drink routinely. Also the nurse bees which produce gelatinous ‘royal jelly’ use water to partially dilute it for easier consumption. In the summer water is also used by fanning worker bees...

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Hivelights May 2017

Posted by on May 6, 2017 in Hivelights | Comments Off on Hivelights May 2017

  May has got to be one of the busiest months in the Chinook Honey world. The bees need extra food and unwrapping, in addition to preparing for and receiving new packaged bees and the dividing of bursting hives to create new colonies. Throw in Alberta’s unpredictable weather and it can be mayhem! Also, next weekend we’re celebrating Vikings with Horde at the Hive May 13th and 14th. Here’s some of the new features you’ll be sure to enjoy: Calum Lykam is a Scottish story teller who will be camped in the Viking Village and sallying forth with tales of Viking lore....

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Hivelights April 2017

Posted by on Apr 7, 2017 in Hivelights | Comments Off on Hivelights April 2017

It would seem spring is here to stay and we’ve had a chance to do our preliminary hive inspections. Although the bee activity around our Honey House has seemed normal, such was not the case at our hives further afield. We have experienced higher than normal honey bee losses this spring and so far we are still trying to pin down the reason. There are indications that we’re not alone – other Alberta beekeepers are also facing severe winter losses this year- we’ll hopefully know more by next month. Our surviving bees have been dining on their custom made pollen patties and are...

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