Wednesday, March 1, 2017

It Is Warm, But Is It Too Early To Add Honey Supers?

When To Add Your Supers

Is it too early to add honey supers? The recent early warm up has all of us confused and probably our bees. If it doesn't turn extremely cold again all will work out. Fingers are crossed.  So does this mean we should add our honey supers earlier?

Scenario One: It stays warm, we add supers and our colonies gather up the early spring harvest of nectar. Great!

Scenario Two: It doesn't stay warm, we add supers and the colony moves up into the empty supers for food and nothing is there. You might consider feeding them, but this means your sugar water will be added to your honey supers where you'd rather have real honey not sugar water. Not Great!

My rule of thumb is not to add supers until dandelions are blooming everywhere. You might see a limited number of early ones, but once my yard is full I add my supers to my overwintered colonies. If you need honey supers, click here.

AMISH BUILT HIVES
Many years ago when we first started beekeeping (24 years now) we called a beekeeping supply company and admitted on the phone that we didn't know what to buy.  The response we got was, well, less than stellar:  "when you figure it out, call us back".  We decided that our customers would never be left to "figure it out".   
 
After seeing what's out there on the market, most of our customers come to us looking for quality, well made American hives.

Our hive kits are assembled and painted.  Amish made 
right here in Illinois by master Amish craftsmen. These are NOT mass produced. We do not resell other companies' hives. These hives are always under the close scrutiny of David's Certified Master Beekeeper's picky demands. These workhorses will outlast your lifetime. Our boxes are rabbet joints to expose less wood to the elements, which eliminates cracks and buckles.  Our telescoping top covers are covered with painted aluminum --which will never rust like traditional tin covers. We didn't cut corners with our inner covers either, these will NOT fall apart on you after the first year as some others do. Boxes come complete with all the frames and foundations so you don't need to spend time trying to figure out which frames go with what foundations and what sizes you need. Our complete kits include a FREE entrance feeder! Allow 2 - 3 weeks delivery. Pick up is available, just call to avoid shipping charges.  Other places sell kits that lack all the boxes you will need. We are looking out for you. We appreciate your business.  


MAKE THE INVESTMENT AND TAKE A CLASS

Now that the beekeeping season is just about ready to start buzzing, beekeeping classes are in big demand. We've held two beginner classes the last two Saturdays at our training center and our Spring Management Class is this Saturday with two openings remaining. This class will address making spring splits, adding honey supers, cleaning up winter die-outs, reversing hive bodies for maximum brood production, spring feeding and more. If you are interested click here or call us. 217-427-2678. 

We have other dates and classes available. See a list of all of our classes here. Our training center is located in central Illinois between Champaign and Danville, Illinois, 5 miles south of I-74. Come see us!

Since My Bees Are Bringing In Pollen Do I Need To Feed?
It's good to see bees bringing in pollen from trees in late winter. But depending on where you live it may be short lived. Many trees such as maples and oaks will produce pollen in late winter only to be short lived when another blast of cold weather moves in. If you are in the south and there are many other sources of nectar and pollen then winter is almost over for you. But if you are in the north and there are no dandelions or other significant nectar sources you will likely need to feed your bees for the next few weeks and even longer if the weather turns cold.
We suggest removing the Winter-Bee-Kind and begin using our Burns Bees Feeding System. Take a look at our suggestion for feeding your bees in late winter and early spring by watching my video below:


A DAY IN THE APIARY WITH DAVID
One of our most popular classes is A Day In The Apiary With David. Come and spend a few hours in a hive with David, EAS Certified Master Beekeeper. You'll learn how to find the queen, how to mark your queen, how to evaluate brood and your queen's health. You'll also learn how to inspect a colony and how to identify pests and diseases. Learn how to know what's healthy and what's not. We have two dates available. Click on the dates below for more information. Isn't it time you step up and learn to really know your hive?

Will Adding A Honey Super Prevent Swarming?
No. Bees swarm when they are congested in their brood nest area and this is what triggers a swarm. DO NOT make the mistake of thinking a honey super will give them room not to swarm. I'm a Certified Master Beekeeper and I see beekeepers constantly making big mistakes that often cost them their hives. Knowing what to do and when is the tricky part of beekeeping. You need a beekeeping mentor. I want to help navigate you through the challenges of spring. I have a special mentorship program called BeeTeam6 where you can call, email or text me your concerns or questions about your bees. Plus you receive a weekly tip and a weekly instructional beekeeping video. 

IS IT BETTER TO START WITH 2 HIVES OR JUST 1 HIVE?

If your budget allows, it's always better to start with 2 hives. Here's why:
1) You can share resources between the two hives, such as eggs, honey etc.
2) If you lose one hive you are still a beekeeper.
3) You can potentially have twice the production of honey.

This year many customers have purchased our Freedom Kit because it comes with two hives and all the equipment. You can purchase any of our kits with or without packages of bees. We still have kits available with a package of bees and a mated queen until March 30th. Bees are for pickup only at our location. Check out all of our hive kits by clicking here.

Sincerely,

David and Sheri Burns
Long Lane Honey Bee Farms
( Located In Central Illinois 40 Miles East Of Champaign/Urbana)
Just tell your smart phone to "Take Me To Long Lane Honey Bee Farms"
217-427-2678
www.honeybeesonline.com

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