Saturday, October 13, 2012

Beekeeping School 2013...

Due to popular demand, Hampden County Beekeeping School will be back in session in 2013! 

There are 8 classes, held twice a month on Thursdays from January to April. 

Members old and new are welcome to attend any and all school sessions.  It's never too late to learn something new!

Beekeeping school will be held at our regular meeting location:
Willimanset Heights Improvement League (WHIL)
                       118 Mount Vernon Rd.
                       Chicopee, MA 01013

Beekeeping School 2013 Schedule:
January 10th & 24th
February 7th & 21st
March 7th & 21st
April 11th & 25th
Classes are from 7pm-9pm

Beekeeping school is $75.00* per person and includes your beginning beekeeping manual, a 1 year membership in the HCBA, a Beekeeping School Certificate upon graduation, and the chance to win a complete starter hive on April 25th.

*$125.00 for two people if you share a book. 

If you know someone who may be interested in enrolling in our Beekeeping School as a new student, please have them contact our treasurer, Cheryl Robare for more information. 
Phone: 413-782-7371

Space is limited, so sign up early!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Hive Loss, Wax Moths, and Storage...

HCBA member Sage Franetovich sent the following inquiry via email, and has allowed me to share it here, so that the information may be of help to others too. 

I had one hive that was started with a new colony this spring.  Unfortunately, I lost all my bees and the honey to robbers (wasps and other bees).  It happened so quickly!  After the robbing, I opened my hive and found empty cells and wax moth larvae and webbing.  So, I am wondering what to do next.  How can I clean up my hive and safely store it for the winter?  I would like to use the same hive next year and minimize buying new equipment.  Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you!
The dreaded wax moth.
I stole this picture from Google images, but this is an example of a frame with minimal damage from wax moths.
When I receive an email inquiry from one of our members, I forward the message to some of our most experience members and enlist their help.  Below is a response from our VP Jeff Rhys...

Bee keeping can be frustrating sometimes. But with each new challenge you overcome the better beekeeper you become First you need to get rid of any active wax moth to prevent further damage. This can be done by freezing the hive for a couple of days. Then it will depend on how much damage was done to the comb to see if any can be saved. If the damage was advanced you will need to take each frame and remove the damaged comb and install new foundation. If there is only a small amount of damage you can clean each frame as best you can and let the bees finish repairing the comb next year. Remove all traces of wax moth from frames and boxes and then properly store your equipment to prevent any more damage from the wax moths. Hope this helps.
~Jeff Rys

I think Jeff's answer is great, and if you'd like to add some helpful advice for Sage, or anyone else reading this post, please do so in the comments section below.