A nice crowd turned out for a tour of our apiary, led by beekeeper John Crist, on our 30th Anniversary celebration. The bees behaved too — except for one curious bee that wanted to check out a visitor’s hearing aid.
Our expanded Apiary has made a much better home for our bees. We now have room to add hives, make splits in hives, and even relocate hives within the Apiary as needed.
At the present time there are eight hives in the Apiary. The suspected culprit in the demise of the one hive that didn’t survive last winter is Varroa Destructor, a parasitic mite that is raising havoc in apiaries across the country. Overall, our treatments for this parasite have been fairly successful; however, there are losses. An effort is being made to utilize the open area around the Apiary to build pollinator gardens that would provide a continuous source of nectar and pollen for the bees throughout the growing season.
The bees were growing fast in the spring with several hives swarming. Attempts to capture the swarms proved unsuccessful as the swarms quickly found new homes, most likely in the 75 acres of woodlands in the Kane Woods. Several hives were in need of new queens this spring, which were easily provided.
The Apiary Pollinator Garden is developing very nicely. Bee Balm plants were planted in June and grew well. Wild Bee Balm, the Purple Coneflower, and the Black Eyed Susan plants were planted in four-by-eight foot beds ready with certified organic soil. Bees were fed as needed during the summer dearth, which was a drop in nectar sources for them. The bees were busy bringing in nectar from the fall blooming flowers: Goldenrod, Japanese Knotweed, and Aster to name a few.
Conservancy Honey for Sale
Raw honey is honey that hasn’t been heated or pasteurized, and it contains natural vitamins, enzymes, powerful antioxidants, and other important nutrients.
Raw, local honey also contains a blend of local pollen, which may strengthen a person’s immune system, and reduce pollen allergy symptoms. Contact Jane Sorcan to purchase our local, raw honey from Conservancy beehives.
Apiary tours are available to anyone interested in viewing the apiary and learning more about the culture of honeybees. Please call or email the Conservancy to make arrangements.
What is a swarm ?
A swarm is a collection of bees that contains at least one queen that has split from the mother colony to establish a new one. A swarm is a natural method of propagation of honeybees.
Why are bees important?
Somewhere between 75% and 95% of all flowering plants on the earth need help with pollination – they need pollinators. Honeybees are pollinators. Pollinators provide pollination services to over 180,000 different plant species and more than 1200 crops. That means that 1 out of every three bites of food you eat is there because of pollinators. If we want to talk dollars and cents, pollinators add 217 billion dollars to the global economy, and honeybees alone are responsible for between 1.2 and 5.4 billion dollars in agricultural productivity in the United States. In addition to the food that we eat, pollinators support healthy ecosystems that clean the air, stabilize soils, protect from sever weather, and support other wildlife.
(Source: Pollinator.org, Accessed May 31, 2016)
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Scrubgrass Run: 1459 Scrubgrass Road, 15106 • Whiskey Point: 1461 Scrubgrass Road, 15106
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