So you got a beehive, now what?
5 tips for new beekeepers
1. Check on your bees, but not too often. Once your new hive is in place, give the colony a few days to get settled (about a week), then you want to suit up and go check on them. The biggest mistake new beekeepers make is checking on the hive too often and not enough.
2. Queen spotting
When you do hive inspections you want to make sure your Queen is in good health. You can do this two ways. The first is checking for larva, if you have baby bees being made, your queen is alive and well. Use this method when the sun is at your back, it makes it easier to find the eggs. The second way is actually finding her. She lives in the middle frames and really doesn't like the sunlight, so she will quickly be moving to the backside of the frames.
3. Don't forget your smoker!
This is your most important tool. This will calm the bees down and make your hive inspections easier and keep you from getting stung. Smoke the hive and then give it a few minutes before removing frames.
4. What are signs of swarming and when does swarming happen?
Look for queen cells in the early summer months.
5. Know your seasons. Your bees have different needs depending on the month and where you're located geographically. The colony will behave very differently in May and December.
These are 5 quick beekeeping facts to help guide you on your new adventure as a beekeeper. I will dig in deeper on the topics above in upcoming blogs. You can support the bee population by purchasing my non-toxic, environmentally and bee friendly candles here.