Hands-on learning sessions off to great start

April 04, 2019 1 Comment

Practical sessions help beginner and experienced beekeepers

Hiveworld.ca’s hands-on Meet the Beekeeper evenings kicked off April 3 southeast of Sherwood Park with a lively mix of questions, teaching and demonstrations.

Questions like: I got 1,000 pounds of honey last year from four hives, then all my bees died! The likely problem was mass attack by wasps, and instructor Barry Haighton suggested it is vital to put on entrance reducers and even a mouse guard to make it easier for the bees to fend off the invaders. Prolonged attack causes forager bees to leave, and the remaining brood-minders quickly lose heart and give up the fight.

Instructional time covered several topics, from where and why the bees occupy various parts of the hives throughout the season (and where they should be now), why some bees are dark black now (they are winter’s older foragers) and others are lighter fawn colour (they are the new spring bees), summer dwindling caused by premature egg-laying and worker-bee exhaustion, and weather conditions that can promote or inhibit spring success.

Participants ranged from experienced beekeepers to those interested in starting their first hive, and all enjoyed getting up close as Barry showed how to do some initial spring hive checks in the outdoor classroom area. Without disturbing the main body of the hive, he removed the top of a hive to show fibreglass insulation and a pail feeder, answering questions about various forms of insulation and the importance of keeping the hive interior dry at all times. The bees need supplementary syrup and then pollen patties right through to late June.

When the top of another hive was removed, the bees were concentrated on one side of the hive, rather than in the centre where they should be. There were signs of dysentery, which is not fatal to the colony, but it can be another sign of trouble.

Meet The Beekeeper nights are free. The next one is April 17, 6:30-8 p.m. Participants should register online, and at the same time sign the online waiver if they are attending for the first time. Bring your own bee suit and gloves, or pick up whatever you need at hiveworld.ca or at our retail store, 5418 - 136 Avenue, Edmonton.

In the meantime, don’t forget to subscribe to our Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channels for all the latest news and tips.  

We're Canadian, we’re beekeepers, and we have the courses, mentor support and supplies you need - free shipping on everything.




1 Response

Judy Winn
Judy Winn

April 13, 2019

I am from the Red Deer area and would like to fine Beekeepers sessions around this area….I am getting my bees this Sunday and very excited…had I known about you I would have got my first hive from you (sorry)…but will order my next hive from you for sure…I am a newbee…attended a class for 2 days ..did a lot of reading but still have along way to go and very nervous about tomorrow.

Leave a comment


Also in Education

Here Comes The Honey!
Here Comes The Honey!

July 12, 2019

It's time for supers and honey! The main flow is on in Alberta, and your colony can have anywhere from 50,000 to 80,000 honeybees! They bring in a lot of pollen and nectar during the main flow and they need room to store the honey That's why you need to add supers on your hive. During the main honey flow, your hive will gain 5 to 25 lbs per day. The main flow in Alberta consists mostly of canola, clover, sweet clover and alfalfa. Depending on where you are located, you may have a mix of these...

Continue Reading

Preparing For The Main Flow
Preparing For The Main Flow

June 18, 2019 1 Comment

Colonies can go from 7,500 bees in March to 80,000 in July! If you are aiming to have surplus honey this summer, you need to ensure your queen lays well in June. You will also need to add boxes or plan to add a super by mid-June. Learn more about why June can be tricky with weather conditions and early summer dearth.

Continue Reading

Why do you need to split your hive?
Why do you need to split your hive?

June 11, 2019

Not sure why most beekeepers need to do a hive split at the end of May? Here we go over some options for spring management and how it will prepare you for the main flow.

Continue Reading