April 2017 newsletter

NBBA April Meeting Notice and Newsletter

Next Meeting: Tuesday, April 25, 2017, 7 PM at the Adams Visitor Center, Adams, MA

· Guest Speaker: Chris Cripps from Betterbee
· Topic: Swarms & Splits
· Chris is willing to bring orders to the meeting, so if you need something from Betterbee, this is a good opportunity.
· Raffle items are always appreciated.
· See Sherry at the meeting if you owe dues for 2017.

Other news:

1) May 13th NBBA will be represented at 2 of the Farmers Market events being sponsored by Tractor Supply, 10AM – 5PM
Locations:
Tractor Supply, 898 Crane Ave., Pittsfield, MA (Richard Klapper)
Tractor Supply, 826 Curran Memorial Highway , North Adams, MA (Barbara C., others?)

2) May 13th 10AM – 5PM
BEAT (Berkshire Environmental Action Team) Spring Enviro Action Fair & Expo
Location: The Stationery Factory, 63 Flansburg Ave., Dalton, MA (We need volunteers.)
More info at http://www.thebeatnews.org/BeatTeam/

3) Bee Yard Locations available in Alford, MA, and the Blackington area of North Adams are still available if anyone is interested in a new bee yard location. If you are interested, let me know and I’ll get you the contact info.

4) Temporary Break for USDA Disease Diagnostic Service
“Due to a staffing crisis, the USDA-ARS Bee Disease Diagnostic Service in Beltsville, MD will be on hiatus, effective immediately. The University of Maryland Bee Lab has graciously supported Mr. Samuel Abban as he leads this 100-year old program, but Samuel is now needed fulltime for a critical University project. Every effort is being made to finalize the hiring of Samuel as a USDA employee so that he can continue this program. Please do not submit new samples until further notice. Samples in hand will be held in cold storage pending our ability to staff this program. In the meantime, the Bee Informed Partnership offers a paid service for analyzing colony loss samples, https://beeinformed.org/programs/emergency-response-kits-2/. We are extremely sorry for this disruption and look forward to continuing this program as part of USDA-ARS efforts to help beekeepers. Please contact us regarding urgent needs. Jay Evans, Research Leader, USDA-ARS Bee Research Laboratory, Beltsville, MD 20705 jay.evans@ars.usda.gov, 301-504-514

5) On a personal note, I am using up my beeswax supply and will be needing more. If you have any extra beeswax that you might be interested in selling or bartering for, let me know.

Bee Well!
Bonnie Frank, NBBA Secretary

March 2016 Meeting

Next Meeting: Tuesday, March 28, 2017, 7 PM at the Adams Visitor Center, Adams, MA

· Guest Speaker: Amie Collins from Betterbee
· Topic: Spring feeding and inspections
· Amie is willing to bring orders to the meeting, so if you need something from Betterbee, this is a good opportunity.
· Raffle items are always appreciated.
· See Sherry at the meeting if you owe dues for 2017.

Other news:

1) There is Bee Clinic from 11 AM -1 PM on March 25th at the Nassau Country Value Ace Agway. They are located at 3517 US 20, Nassau NY. I believe the clinic is being run by the Norray family, who are selling nucs through that store. They are asking folks to sign up. I assume it can be done by phone. Their phone number is: 518-766-3717.

2) Ken Warchol, as always, gave an informative and entertaining presentation last week at the Berkshire Botanical Society. It was very interesting and well attended. I was glad some of our members were able to attend. I have attached a 2 page handout from Ken outlining what you should expect to see week by week from a 5 pound package.

3) The individual from Alford, MA, is still looking for someone interested in placing hives on his property. If you are interested, let me know and I’ll get you his contact info.

Bee Well!
Bonnie Frank, NBBA Secretary

Feb 2017 NBBA newsletter

February 2017 NBBA Newsletter

Next Meeting: Tuesday, February 28, 2017, 7 PM at the Adams Visitor Center, Adams, MA

· Topic: Discuss Ordering Bees. If you have any nucs or packages for sale, please let Barb or me know the price and any quantity discounts, before the meeting on Tuesday.
· Topic: Filtering Beeswax. Bonnie will start off the discussion with how she filters beeswax for candles. If you have an approach to wax filtering that works for you, please come and share it with the group.
· Raffle items are always appreciated.
· Let me know if you are willing to bring refreshments to the meeting

Older news:

1) A request came in from an individual in Alford, MA, who is looking for someone interested in placing hives on his property. If you are interested, let me know and I’ll get you his contact info.

2) Some notes from Kim Skrym of the MA Bee Program:

Winter/Spring Inspections 2016/2017: We are getting reports of unanticipated colony losses again this time of year from beekeepers all over MA. Based on what we have seen so far these losses cannot be attributed to CCD, but rather due to low/no pollen stores, low/no brood and high Varroa mite levels. However, this may not be the case for all colony losses so please reach out if you are interested in getting an inspection to evaluate the loss send an email: hive.inspection.request@state.ma.us or leave a message: 617-626-1801 and we will get back to you ASAP.

Colony Collapse Disorder: If you think you have CCD, please note that the USDA specifies that colonies lost to CCD must meet all of the following criteria: 1) Little to no build-up of dead bees in the hive or at the hive entrance; 2) Rapid loss of adult honey bee population despite the presence of queen, capped brood; 3) Absence or delayed robbing of the food reserves; 4) Loss not attributable to Varroa or Nosema loads. If your colony loss fits this definition, please contact us ASAP using the information above.

MA Hive Loss Survey 2017: If you have unfortunately lost a colony this season, please consider reporting it to the MA Hive Loss Survey so that we can collect local data to evaluate these incidences: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfQN4wEBe0x3B6nK-t1llqOTR5yCT6bCMhUsYIAISy20_rVHQ/viewform?c=0&w=1

Inspection Request Form 2017: The Apiary Program website has been updated with an online request submission platform for those wishing to get a jump start on requesting their 2017 inspection – you can find the link here: http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/agr/farm-products/apiary/mdar-apiary-inspection-request-form.html. If you have not already, I urge you to go ahead and submit your inspection requests for the 2017 season so that we can better plan to meet your needs.
Also, Don’t forget to bring your 8 oz jars of honey if you want to donate honey for the MA Bee Organization
Bee Well!
Bonnie Frank, NBBA Secretary

February notes

NBBA Update

Tue 2/7/2017 9:34

1) Mass Bee is looking for donations of 1/2 lb jars of honey. They are hoping to get 2 cases of honey from every beekeeping organization. The honey is given out at Agriculture Day at the State house in Boston to the State Legislators. The honey is representative of agriculturalproducts produced throughout the state. Massachusetts Agriculture Day is on March 24th this year and is the one day a year where farmers come together to focus on agricultural legislation.

So, if you are interested in donating honey, please bring it to the February mtg. Please put your own label on the jars.

Some background: “The Massachusetts Beekeepers Association represents over 1200 beekeepers across the state ranging from hobbyists with 1-2 hives to commercial beekeepers with several hundred hives. MassBee has representatives serving on the Eastern Apicultural Society Board, the National Honey board, and Massachusetts Agriculture in the Classroom. Our representatives to these organizations are the voice of beekeeping in Massachusetts.”

2) Mass Bee also would like to know if our club wants to take a stance on the spraying of pesticides throughout the state (mosquito control). A “Yes” vote will mean, we will go along with other clubs fight the use of pesticides, a “No” vote will leave things as they are. We will vote with a show of hands at the February meeting.

3) The Worcester County Beekeepers Club has invited us to their SPECIAL March 4th meeting. Dr. Tom Seeley and Dr. Dennis vanEngelsldorp will be presenting. The cost is $10 for non-WCBA members and free to WCBA members. Lunch must be ordered in advance and the cost is $10.

Please note that we are anticipating a large turnout and therefore we have switched from our normal meeting location to a much larger facility- Quabbin High School in Barre MA.

More information can be found on our website:
worcestercountybeekeepers.com

Mary- WCBA President

AGENDA & TOPICS: 8:00–9:00 Free Coffee, Danish & Bee talk 9:00 WCBA President’s Welcome—Mary Duane
9:15–10:30 DR. TOM SEELEY The bee colony as a honey factory We will explore how a colony of honey bees operates as an factory that produces honey efficiently despite tremendous day-to-day swings in the supply of nectar, the raw material for making honey. An important feature of the organization of the honey production process is a division of labor between the nectar foragers, elderly workers who toil outside the hive collecting the nectar, and the nectar receivers, middle-age workers who toil inside the hive converting the nectar into honey. For this talk, I will draw heavily on material reported in my book “The Wisdom of the Hive.”
10:30–12:00 DR. DENNIS VANENGELSDORP Drivers of colony losses Managed colonies have been dying at rates that are unacceptably high. Why? There is growing consensus that these losses are driven by three major factors: parasites and pathogens—principle among them Varroa and the viruses they vector; pesticides—both beekeeper and farmer applied; and poor nutrition. These factors can work alone or in synergy to reduce colony health. Here we explore the evidence for each, with an eye on how to reduce unacceptably high rates of colony losses.
12:00-1:00 Lunch (Register for lunch using the form on page 4, or bring your own)
1:00–2:15 DR. TOM SEELEY How does a honeybee colony regulate its water collection Water collection is essential to two parts of a honey bee colony’s well-being: thermoregulation of the broodnest and nutrition of the immature bees. When overheating of the broodnest threatens on a hot day, a colony increases its water intake. And when a colony is not able to gather much nectar, it must raise its water intake to produce the watery food given to the young larvae, which is 70-80% water. We will look at how a colony controls it collection of water to meet its needs.
2:15–3:30 DR. DENNIS VANENGELSDORP Data Driven Management: Practices that work The Bee Informed Partnership has been conducting annual loss and management surveys for 5 years. This data can now be used to help model ideal management practices. Here we will look at practices that have consistently correlated with increased survivorship, with the aim of developing generalized best management practices that are regionally and operationally appropriate.
3:30 Closing and Raffle

Meet our Guest Speakers: Dr. Tom Seeley has a degree in chemistry from Dartmouth College and his PhD from Harvard University. He held a postdoctoral fellowship in the Society of Fellows at Harvard until 1980, when he accepted a faculty position at Yale University. He remained there until 1986, when he joined the Department of Neurobiology and Behavior at Cornell University. In recognition of his scientific work, he has received the Alexander von Humboldt Distinguished U.S. Scientist Prize, been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, received a Gold Medal Book Award from Apimondia for The Wisdom of the Hive, and been elected a Fellow of both the Animal Behavior Society and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. His most enduring honor, though, is to have had a species of bee named after him: Neocorynurella seeleyi
Dr. Dennis vanEngelsdorp is an Asst Professor at the University of Maryland’s Department of Entomology and an internationally known honey bee epidemiologist. He graduated with his master’s in apiculture at Guelph, worked for the Canadian Gov. as a consultant to the Antigua Beekeepers Cooperative in the West Indies. He returned north to work at Cornell University as an extension agent before working as the Acting State Apiarist for PA, through a contract with Penn State, where he earned his PhD. Among other postitions, he has served as the President of the Apiary Inspectors of America, is a founding member of the Colony Collapse Working Group and is the President of the Bee Informed Partnership, Inc. Dennis has written extensively, been widely interviewed and has given well over 300 talks on beekeeping, including a TED talk on bee losses.

– Bonnie

January 2017 Newsletter

January 2017 Meeting Notice & Newsletter

Next Meeting: Tuesday, January 24, 2017, 7 PM at the Adams Visitor Center, Adams, MA

· Topic: Discuss Ordering Bees. If you have any nucs or packages for sale, please let Barb or me know the price and any quantity discounts, before the meeting on Tuesday.
· Bring any questions or ideas you’d like to share.
· Raffle items are always appreciated.
· Let me know if you are willing to bring refreshments to the meeting

Other news:

1) A request came in from an individual in Alford, MA, who is looking for someone interested in placing hives on his property. If you are interested, let me know and I’ll get you his contact info.

2) Some notes from Kim Skrym of the MA Bee Program:

Winter/Spring Inspections 2016/2017: We are getting reports of unanticipated colony losses again this time of year from beekeepers all over MA. Based on what we have seen so far these losses cannot be attributed to CCD, but rather due to low/no pollen stores, low/no brood and high Varroa mite levels. However, this may not be the case for all colony losses so please reach out if you are interested in getting an inspection to evaluate the loss send an email: hive.inspection.request@state.ma.us or leave a message: 617-626-1801 and we will get back to you ASAP.

Colony Collapse Disorder: If you think you have CCD, please note that the USDA specifies that colonies lost to CCD must meet all of the following criteria: 1) Little to no build-up of dead bees in the hive or at the hive entrance; 2) Rapid loss of adult honey bee population despite the presence of queen, capped brood; 3) Absence or delayed robbing of the food reserves; 4) Loss not attributable to Varroa or Nosema loads. If your colony loss fits this definition, please contact us ASAP using the information above.

MA Hive Loss Survey 2017: If you have unfortunately lost a colony this season, please consider reporting it to the MA Hive Loss Survey so that we can collect local data to evaluate these incidences: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfQN4wEBe0x3B6nK-t1llqOTR5yCT6bCMhUsYIAISy20_rVHQ/viewform?c=0&w=1

Inspection Request Form 2017: The Apiary Program website has been updated with an online request submission platform for those wishing to get a jump start on requesting their 2017 inspection – you can find the link here: http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/agr/farm-products/apiary/mdar-apiary-inspection-request-form.html. If you have not already, I urge you to go ahead and submit your inspection requests for the 2017 season so that we can better plan to meet your needs.

Antibiotics for Foulbrood Treatment 2017: Based on the national changes in veterinary feed and antibiotic usage, please note that you will need a prescription from your veterinarian to purchase the common antibiotics used for foulbrood: Terramycin (oxytetracycline hydrochloride) and Tylan (tylosin): http://c.ymcdn.com/sites/www.abfnet.org/resource/resmgr/2016_e_buzz_/Dec_2016/ABF_VFD_Letter_12-1-16.pdf

If you suspect that you have American Foulbrood (AFB), please notify us immediately since these colonies are not be treated, but have to be destroyed to prevent the outbreak of infectious disease per state law andregulation. To support veterinarians in this change, we have partnered with the state veterinarian and Tufts University to provide training early next year. However, if your organization is willing and able to make some additional space reserved specifically for veterinarians in your Bee School, please let me know so I can share widely. The veterinarians will need all the support they can get to prepare for this transition.

Bee Well!

Bonnie Frank
NBBA Secretary

August meeting

NBBA August Meeting Notice & Newsletter

Next Meeting: Tuesday, August 23, 2016, 7 PM at the Adams Visitor Center, Adams, MA

Agenda:

– Q&A – Some members have requested that we have an open meeting, so individuals can ask questions. This is it! Bring your questions!

– Show & Tell: Do you have an interesting or unusual beekeeping item? Bring it along to show the group.

– Annual Banquet –

– Officer Selection –

Don’t forget to bring raffle items!!!!

Other news:

1) Notes from our July meeting:

– Many thanks to Wayne Andrews for his lively presentation and demo of making an essential oil supplement for the bees.

– Here’s the “recipe” Wayne shared with us… Add 3-4 drops each of lemongrass, spearmint, Tea tree, and thymol essential oils to 1 quart of a 1 to 1 sugar syrup. He also adds 1/4 teaspoon fumagillin. He recommends using a high speed blender (like a Ninja) so the oils stay mixed in. He treats his bees with this mixture early in the Spring (April) and again in the fall.

2) Apiary Demo At UMass, Friday August 26th (10AM – Noon). They will be talking about fall management/winter prep and will be able to answer any questions folks have on the topic.

Location: 911 North Pleasant St, Amherst, Ma