Wednesday, April 29, 2015

MIKSA NUC UPDATE from beekeeper Denise

miksa just called - he's packing up for heading north and has some "issues"
with nucs.  he's asking that people who have orders with him to PLEASE CALL
(352) 348-4002 

it's not that anyone will be without bees....but it's going to be "different" from a 5
frame deep situation.   ....which is not an issue with experienced keepers, but
some beginners will have learn another method....

NOTE: ECWBA does not endorse any suppliers or products

Friday, April 24, 2015


Beekeeper Denise reports that Andy Miksa will be delivering packages and nucs ordered from him on or around May 9th.

Thursday, April 23, 2015


Here is another video on the FLOW extraction frame.  Looks interesting.   Haven't seen any pricing yet.  Remember that ECWBA does not endorse any products.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


Here is a link describing some of the health benefits of honey.  Have a cup of tea with honey while reading this article.

Sunday, April 19, 2015


This is the second time I have seen this "new" honey extraction method.  This time the video shows a little of the technical details.  Is it fact or fantasy?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015


The past few warm days I have been out cleaning the bottom boards on my surviving hives.  Saw the usual dead bees and sugar particles from my winter emergency sugar cube feed.  It appears that all surviving hives are now raising brood and I think they will continue to survive.  The final count for my apiary was 79% survival over the winter.  In the last week I lost another hive by robbing by a neighboring strong hive.  This work also got me thinking about several hive management techniques. 


While destacking the hives to clean the bottom boards I noted that the bees in the stronger hives were utilizing both the upper and lower brood chambers.  In a few of the weaker hives I deliberately searched for the queen.  In several I noted the queen had voluntarily moved down to the lower brood chamber.  It seems that the task of reversing the brood chambers in the spring may not be the mandatory task that has been recommended in many “how to” books.  Comments from club members and blog readers would be appreciated. 


I have seen recommendations that three brood chambers are superior to two brood chambers.  This of course requires additional equipment.  This recommendation was made for two reasons.  One, in northern climates the third brood chamber provides the bees with additional honey for overwintering.  This is the recommendation of the University of Minnesota Extension Service.  The third chamber reduces or eliminates the need for fall feeding with sugar syrup.  Wisconsin’s winters are very close in severity to Minnesota’s.  Two, the third brood chamber results in a higher overall hive population, which then yield more honey per hive.  With the high number of winter starvation hive failures a third brood chamber has some merit.  Comments from club members and blog readers would be appreciated.  

Monday, April 13, 2015


The following article put out by a USDA scientist provides several hints at maximizing the productivity of your honey bee colonies.  One strong colony at the time of honey flow is better than several weak colonies.

Saturday, April 11, 2015


This article reports on pesticide contamination found in samples of pollen extracted from European bee hives.  Is similar contamination also is US bee hives?  This article was submitted by beekeeper Denise.

I found the article a little comical because at the same time the article is advertising pollen for sale.  Who would want to by pesticide contaminated pollen?

Friday, April 10, 2015


The attached article has a chart showing the various stages for beekeeping throughout the year.  This chart is for the Piedmont, Virginia area and would need a little rework for central Wisconsin.  Thanks to beekeeper Denise for providing this article.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Poor Nutrition Remedies

Just like human babies nutrition of honey bee larvae during development is important.  The attached article stresses the importance of a variety and quantity of pollen to ensure the proper development of the larvae.  This is especially important during the spring population build up.  Provided by beekeeper Denise.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Michael Bush

Several club members are going to Wausau, Wi. this weekend to attend seminars put on by the Central Wisconsin Beekeepers Association.  The main attraction is Micheal Bush as the keynote speaker.  Micheal is a noted author of several beekeeping books.  His beekeeping philosophy is that the beekeeping industry is their own worst enemy.  Use of chemicals to control mites is counterproductive.  The large cell size comb currently used lessens the ability of the bees to naturally control mites.  Only survivor stock bees should be propagated.  Michael has his own website where he expounds on these theories and also sells books; both those authored by him and by others.  The following link will provide you with more information.

Monday, April 6, 2015


This article describes the adverse affects that glyphosates have on honeybees.  Glyphosate is the primary chemical in Roundup herbicide.  Since the Roundup patent is long expired glyphosates are also available under many generic names.  Glyphosate is the chemical used by farmers and landscapers to clear grass and other weeds from fields prior to planting.  Glyphosate is normally thought of as a herbicide, not a pesticide.

Friday, April 3, 2015


According to this article the EPA is halting expansion of of usage of some types of pesticides.  They are also evaluating the effect of six types of neonicotinoids on bees.  The results of the EPA evaluation are scheduled to be complete in 2018 and 2019.  See article below.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015


The Bee Informed Partnership is seeking data on winter and summer hives losses from commercial and hobbyist beekeepers.  Read the below request from them and respond as you see fit.
Dear Beekeeper,           
Beekeepers needed!  Thank you for your interest in participating in the National Colony Loss Management Survey organized by the Bee Informed Partnership and sponsored by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).

Please go to our online survey at and complete the survey there.  It will be live on April 1st and close on April 30th.  Please do not complete the survey more than once. Information about past Winter Loss and National Management Surveys and the annual reports can be found online at

The Colony Loss Survey has evolved from our winter loss survey because last year we found that commercial beekeepers lost 25% of their colonies over the summer, and so we are now starting to monitor and report annual, in addition to winter losses.  The National Management Survey is conducted annually in conjunction with the Colony Loss Survey. Designed to take about 30 minutes, the 2 surveys are  aimed at looking for relationships between colony loses and colony management (including  disease treatment strategies, supplemental feeding, etc.) and/or other factors that may influence colony health (such as colony location, honey production, and forage type). Your participation in this research is voluntary and your responses will be kept confidential. In any publication or presentation resulting from this research, no personally identifiable information will be disclosed.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact us at  Once again thank you for your participation.

Dr. Dennis vanEngelsdorp

Project Director, Bee Informed Partnership

University of Maryland

Karen Rennich

Project Manager, Bee Informed Partnership

University of Maryland