* The next regular meeting of the ACBA will be on October 11, 2018. The planned speaker will be Bob Cole who will have a video dealing with swarms.
* The meeting will be held at the Ashe County Agricultural Center Office, located at 134 Government Center Drive in Jefferson, NC.
* With the track of hurricane Florence poised to make a significant impact on North Carolina, there are some important considerations for beekeepers who may be affected by the heavy rain and winds. Please further disseminate to your local network of beekeepers and share this link: https://entomology.ces.ncsu.edu/2017/09/protective-measures-of-beehives-during-hurricanes-2/
* First, make sure hive equipment is secured to resist strong winds. A simple brick on the top lid is likely to be insufficient to keep the lid from flying off in winds above 50 mph. A lidless hive can cause problems for the bees by introducing moisture and letting heat escape. Strapping the lid down with ratchet straps or securing with duct tape might be in order, particularly for outlying yards. The same is true for hive boxes, particularly if they are relatively new (i.e., the bees have not yet propolized them together sufficiently). Also consider removing unnecessary boxes (e.g., top-hive feeders) to minimize the wind profile.
* Second, be sure to have the hives on sturdy stands or level ground. Entire beehives can be blown over by strong winds, particularly when they are fairly tall with many honey supers or are otherwise top heavy. If the hives are on tall or insecure stands, you can move them onto (dry) level ground temporarily to lessen the chances that they topple. Importantly, if you’re using solid bottom boards, be sure to have your hives tilting forward so that rain water does not pool and collect on the floor of the hive.
* Third, beware of falling trees and tree limbs. These can be particularly problematic for beehives since they can completely crush all equipment and kill the entire colony. It is also hard to prevent with some sort of barrier or cover because of the sheer weight of many trees, so if you apiary is in a wooded location you may need to move the hives temporarily.
* Fourth, make sure the hives are not in low-lying areas or those prone to flooding. River banks can be useful apiary locations because of their proximity to fresh water, but in flooding conditions entire apiaries can be tragically swept away. Be sure to move any beehives in flood plains until the waters have subsided. Beehives on the ground but in recessed areas can cause water to flood the entrances and may even suffocate the bees if not given an upper entrance.
* Finally, following heavy rains like hurricanes, various local and state agencies have traditionally sprayed regions with stagnant water to control mosquito outbreaks. While important for public health, such insecticides can be extremely problematic for honey bees. If you are registered through the NCDA&CS, you will be contacted directly if your beehives are in an area schedule to be sprayed. If you are not registered, however, the state has no means to notify you and your bees may be at risk to insecticide exposure. Please consult the Agricultural Chemical manual for information and advice about how to mitigate exposure to pesticides.
* The regular meeting of the ACBA was held on August 9, 2018. The meeting outline, below, is avalable as a downloadable file.
* Jim Rash (shown right), one of our members, discussed winterizing. Before the meeting at 7:00, pizza and delicious snacks courtesy of Maggie McClelland were enjoyed by all!
* After the meeting, the following were door prizes awarded...
- Jim DeJuneas - liquid soap (donated by Tina Roberts, Orianna Naturals)
- Johnny Parsons - 2 bar soaps (donated by Tina Roberts, Orianna Naturals)
- ACBA cap - Deborah Baldridge
- ACBA t-shirt - Greg Lyons
Parties in Watauga interested in beekeeping, the Allegheny bee group's evening meetings have been changed to the second Tuesday of the month, beginning in March.
An Intermediate Beekeeping Class started on September 10th. Classes are held at Wilkes Community College/Ashe. Classes from 6-9 PM each Monday. For more information on ways to register, call Becky Greer - 336-903-3117 or email - firstname.lastname@example.org.
The referenced North Carolina Farm Bureau, Ag in the Classroom program curriculum, which can be opened using the below, downloadable file, was provided by:
Extension Agent, Agriculture
N.C. Cooperative Extension
Ashe County Center
134 Government Circle, Suite 202
Jefferson, NC 28640
(336) 846-5882 (fax)
* There will be a Beginning Beekeeping class at Wilkes Community College/Ashe campus beginning this Monday (3-19) from 6-9 PM.
* Shelley Felder (The Honey Hole) is teaching the class every Monday for 6 weeks.
* Need more info?? Call 336-846-3900.