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Buzz Words - July 2007

Table of Contents
1. Announcements
2. From the President
3. The Big E
4. Upcoming Meetings of Interest
5. Claire's Corner
6. Summertime Tips
7. Compete at the Fair
8. Classifieds
9. Dana Stahlman
10. Beetle Traps

Next Meeting
Sunday July 15th, from 11:00 to 1:00, at the Barnstable County Fairgrounds on Route 151, in East Falmouth.  This will be a time to “spiff-up” the Bee Building for the Fair.  Many hands make light work of sweeping, painting, cleaning windows, weeding the walk and rejuvenating the gardens.

AND, it is also time for us to enjoy a pot-luck lunch made up of all your favorite summer recipes. The club will provide paper plates, cups, and drinks.

We will also be setting prices for which your honey, candles, creams and lotions will be sold. So, if you think your product is worth $X, you had better be there!

The club hive will be in the orchard and Claire will conduct a hive opening for those interested. Bring veils.

There will be NO MEETING in August, as we cannot use the Community Building in the summer.

Annual Survey
» Barnstable County Beekeepers 2007 Survey (pdf)

From the President
Here's hoping you are adding supers and will have honey to extract for the fair this month.  After combining my old hive because it was queenless (maybe it was the beekeeper who squashed her!! don't know what else could be the cause), my new "nuc" is doing great.  They have just started to store nectar in the first super.  Maybe I'll have some to extract in time for the fair. 

I just received my shipment of colored beeswax foundation to make rolled candles for gifts along with some for the fair.  I like to keep them on hand for quick gifts with a jar of my honey.  We'll look for those extras that you all make, like the lip balms, hand creams, molded candles and of course the pollen, creamed and comb honeys which sell well along with the liquid honey.

My schedule still has plenty of shifts to be filled so please contact me or I'll be calling you as the fair grounds wants a list of the volunteers names at least a week before the fair.  Also, if you sell something at the fair, you must work one shift.  Go on line at and see the entertainment schedule.  Your tickets are good for the whole day and with 4 people per shift it allows for breaks also. 

In lieu of a meeting this month, we meet at the fair ground on Sunday, July 15th,at 11:00 A.M.  to polish up the building and grounds. The tickets for parking and admission will be given our by Claire on that day also. Come with your garden gloves, tools for gardening and working on the building and bring a" potluck" dish to share when the work is finished.  When I popped in at 1:00 on my lunch break from my little summer job, the work was finished and almost all the food devoured so the work goes fast with many hands.  I also heard there were some great "potlucks" with only an empty dish for my eyes to feast on. --  Marte

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The Eastern States Exposition (The Big E)
I have done presentations at the Big E in Springfield for the past 3 years on Bees, Wasps and Beekeeping. This year's fair will run from September 14 through the 30th. In return they provide admission and room accommo-dations. In the past it has been an RV with twins and a double bed. I have usually done 2 and a half days with 2 or 3 one hour lectures per day. In between lectures I(we) can roam the grounds and take in all the shows and see all the crafts. The meals are the only expense. If anyone is interested in joining me, please let me know before the end of July. It is on a first come basis for picking which days to attend and if I(we) respond early enough, I (we) can be listed in the brochures as well as the daily program. Check out for events and the shows and let me know which days you prefer. -- Marte

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Meetings of Interest
Eastern Apicultural Association Annual Short Course and Conference
August 6th to the 10th, 2007
University of Delaware
Theme: Beekeeping Inside and Out

Massachusetts Beekeepers’ Association Fall Meeting and Honey Show
Saturday, October 13th
K of C Hall, Leicester, MA

Southern New England Beekeepers Assembly (SNEBA)
Saturday November 17th, 2007
Theme: Healthy Bees
Hampden, CT

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Claire's Corner
Fun at the Fair!! Seriously, it is a blast to work the fair booth! Don’t be intimidated. You “newbees” know much more than the general public. And, you’ll be able to see the observation hive working industriously. We all should have a queen like this one! This week we will need to remove the third frame of brood in order to prevent swarming at the fair. And, her attendants love her so much, we need to replace the golden “tiara” added earlier.

The display theme at the Fair will be “A Pollen-nation.” Hopefully this will continue to promote the value of honeybees to U.S. agriculture which has been highlighted by national media this spring.

As the season progresses and the hive population increases so will your mite count. Our count to date is very low and nil in some hives. Upon hiving the new packages this April and May we used a number of sticky boards. Little to no varroa were spotted on the Crisco. This certainly was a comfortable start with new packages.

Moving into July we will experience a dearth of nectar in most areas. This might increase the aggressivness in some hives, but that is no reason to ignore them. For the next few months, and on a monthly schedule, we should be checking for varroa mites. Check your calendar for your availability, grease up that sticky board and leave it under the screened bottom board for three (3) days. Varroa counts under 50 per day are at a reasonable level.

A very innocuous treatment with confectioner’s sugar will help keep your varroa count low. One cup of confectionary sugar per deep body sifted over the top bars and brushed between the frames should knock off more of those pesky mites.

Each of our hive sport a drone sink in the top deep. Every 21 to 28 days, we look for this painted medium frame, nestled among the deep frames, pull it out and scrape off all the newly formed and capped drone cells. Varroa just love the drone brood, and once cells are capped it is easy to do away with them. To date, very few varroa have been noted in this drone brood, another very encouraging sign!

Also with this newsletter is a simple to make at home trap for small hive beetle for those of you who may find a few of these creatures in your colonies. Our thanks go to Bee Culture for this feature.

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Summertime Tips
Always have a source of water available as the weather heats up.

Each time you visit the hive heft it carefully from the back to get an idea of weight and stores.

Continue to monitor monthly for varroa ‘cause as brood count increases so does the varroa count.

Remember to not remove your honey til you are ready to extract. Stored honey will attract small hive beetle.

Replace those grease patties when consumed to keep the tracheal mite count low.

A fellow beekeeper would like to train her dog to sniff out American Foul Brood. If anyone has a frame or two (we hope not), contact Claire at (508) 888-2304

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Compete at the Fair
Honey and wax for competition must be entered either Wednesday, the 18th, between 5 and 7 p.m., or Thursday morning between 8 and 10 a.m.. Your honey entries must be in 2 matching glass jars with no labels. Beeswax blocks need to be entered in 3’s, candles in pairs, and molds are individual. Good Luck!!]

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Ed has 12 ounce flat-belly, flip-top teddy bears for sale. They are $6.00 for 12. His cell is (508) 802-0509

Claire has 6 ounce flat-belly teddys with high-flow spouts at $4.50 for 12. Call Claire at (508) 888-2304

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Dana Stahlman

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Beetle Traps
beetle traps

back to top Last updated 07/15/07