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Buzz Words - April, 2003

Table of Contents
1. Announcements
2. From the President
3. Mass Beekeepers’ Association
4. Bees, Bees, Bees
5. Tip of the Month
6. Workers Wanted
7. Claire’s Corner
8. Nomination Committee Recommendations

Next Meeting: 7:30 P.M., on Tuesday, April 8th, at the West Barnstable Community Building, on Route 149.

Program: This month, our own George Muhlebach will advise us on what to look for and what measures to take in order to prevent swarming in our hives.

Our April meeting constitutes our organization’s annual meeting. At such time, we conduct a small amount of business, hold elections, and then go on to our normal meeting format. The slate, as presented by the Nominating Committee, can be found further in the newsletter. Nominations will also be accepted from the floor, in the event any of you would like to serve as an officer or board member.

Check your mailing label! Does it have and "03" or "04" after your name? If not, your dues are in arrears and this will be your last issue. Don’t let this happen! Fill out the form at the end of the newsletter and send your check today!

From the President
April marks our Annual Meeting and election of Officers and Directors. Please note the slate as proposed by the Nominating Committee to be voted on at the business portion of the meeting. I don’t have a "State of the Bees" address to present to you at this time but our order for packaged bees is the largest ever by this club. We will be introducing around two million eight hundred thousand bees to the Cape and Islands come April 13th. If anyone asks "What’s buzzin?" You can explain it a little easier now.

Peter Cadieux is organizing the work on the Fair Booth at the end of April. Interested volunteers should speak to him at our meeting to see if you can assist.

Ed Osmun wants everyone who ordered equipment to call him to arrange picking it up. He is not in the business of storing ordered equipment. We are thankful he is kind enough to have the order go to his home temporarily. Our meeting topic is going to be far more exciting than the business portion as we discuss swarming with our member George Muhlebach. He has done some interesting work in this area to share with the members.

To all the volunteers who make this club run so smoothly I “Thank You” -- Geoffrey

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Mass Beekeepers’ Association
You still have a chance to attend the Spring Meeting at the Royal Plaza Hotel, in Fitchburg, on Saturday, March 29th. Beginning at 9 A.M., we will hear from Douglas Gillespie, Commissioner of the Mass. Department of Food and Agriculture; Larry Connor of WicWas Press will speak on maintaining Honey Quality once it is removed from the hive, and Problems with Queens; and Lloyd Spear of the Ross Round Company will tell us how to take pollen from the bees and the reasons why.

Bees, Bees, Bees
The bees are still on track for arrival on Sunday, April 13th. We have 210 packages coming from Wilbanks Apiaries in Georgia, and disbursement will be at two locations again this year.

For those of you on the Lower Cape, that is defined as east of the Yarmouth-Dennis town line, Ed Osmun will be at the Harwich Public Gardens at 11 A.M., with Jay Barthelmeus doing an installation demonstration. Please be prompt. Directions to the gardens are:

From Rt. 28 in Harwich, take the North Rt. 39-124 road (across from Cape Water Sports) past the Shaw’s Market. At approximately ¼ mile from Rt. 28, take a LEFT onto dirt road of Harwich Gardens, go to the end and bear left.

For those of you who happen to reside to the west of this line, pickup will be at 186 Old County Rd, in East Sandwich. Veterans may pick up from 11 A.M. on. Claire will conduct an installation demonstration at 1 P.M. From Rt. 6, take Exit 4, head north off the ramp, and travel approximately ½ mile to a left turn at Old County Rd. 186 is the first driveway on the left. Bees will be at the shed, as in the past. For the installation, you will be directed a bit further up the path. Please pick up before 2:30, as we have 24 packages to install.

While on the subject of bees, if you suddenly realize that you are in need of replacement bees, you may call York Bee at 912-427-3711 for packaged Italians shipped Priority Mail. Or, you may call Merrimack Valley Apiaries in Billerica @ 978-667-5380, or Mac Hedgpeth in Charlestown RI @ 401-322-9178 to make arrangements to purchase nucleus colonies.

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Tip of the Month
Though the weather is (finally) becoming more seasonal, it is still a critical time for your bees. Keep checking the amount of stores available to them, as those flights to cleanse and stretch also require more sustenance, not to mention the buildup of brood. Now is the time to start feeding 1:1 sugar syrup. If you have candy left over, that can still be inserted under the inner cover. If you have pollen substitute, now is the time to feed it. If you collected local pollen last year, this is the time to feed it. Our calendar says it is time to insert Apistan strips, but that is no longer an automatic treatment. Apistan is now reserved for fall use, if needed.

Workers Wanted
Peter Cadieux and Aaron Lovell are shooting to replace the roof on the bee building at the Fairgrounds on Saturday, April 26th. A few strong backs and arms will help to lighten their load. To volunteer, call Pete @ 508-888-2304, or Aaron @ 508-548-0766.

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Claire’s Corner
On March 23rd, we saw the workers in the observation hive bring in the first pollen. Just tiny little basketfuls, but were they excited! Hopefully, this will stimulate the queen to lay, as, to date, no brood has been seen. The full frame of honey that we added a few weeks ago just did not complete the diet needed.

Now that the snow/ice has finally melted in our backyard, we were astonished to see what perennials are beginning to peek up. Of course, the crocuses are in full bloom and probably the source of the above pollen excitement, but early risers are sedum Autumn Joy, Queen Anne’s Lace and the goldenrod. All are desirable bee plants, as you will see in May, with Sue and Marsha’s presentation.

With a little luck and a nurturing green thumb, we hope to have many four-inch pots of Goldenrod "Golden Fleece" available at the Pollinator Plant Sale. The honeybees love this 18" tall perennial with long spikes of golden mass flowering in late summer. Also, thanks to Piedmont Plant in Georgia, we will have Butterfly weed and Cerise Queen Yarrow. Keep your hopes high for a warm, sunny and dry spring!

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Nomination Committee Recommendations

Members offered for re-election:

  • Geoff Lenk - President (2nd year of 2-year term)
  • Claire Desilets - Secretary
  • Paul Desilets - Treasurer
  • Connie Novitsky - Past-President

  • Shelly Bancer
  • Peter Cadieux
  • Andy Morris
  • George Muhlebach
  • Jan Rapp
  • Richard Rys
  • Ed Osmun (addition Board Member suggested)

    Slate of officers for consideration:

  • Geoff Lenk - President (2nd year of 2 year term)
  • Peter Cadieux - Vice President
  • Claire Desilets - Secretary
  • Paul Desilets - Treasurer

    Respectfully submitted by the nominating committee members:
    Connie Novitsky (Chair), Jan Rapp, Sandy Wilkins

  • back to top Last updated 03/25/03