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Buzz Words - September, 2002

Table of Contents
1. Announcements
2. From the President
3. Barnstable County Fair Update
4. BCBA Clothing
5. Glassware
6. Hive Opening
7. Medications
8. Claire’s Corner
9. Library Additions
10. Classifieds

Next Meeting: 7:30 P.M., on Tuesday, September 10th, at the West Barnstable Community Building, on Route 149.
Program is: Honey, Extracting Methods, and Equipment

Kindly bring them back to our library for re-cataloging in preparation for this fall.
(Any questions or problems call Shelley Bancer 508-420-5436)

From the President
Bee articles are showing up everywhere now a day. Business Week, 9/2/02, has positive piece on honey containing antioxidants, Science News, 7/6/02, article on Africanized bees pollinating coffee plants and the Wall Street Journal, 8/23/02, had a critic taste testing catalog honey sales that was interesting.

Our new website is really terrific. If you haven’t looked at it recently please do so. We owe a great deal of thanks to member Dina Pandya for constructing the entire project. It took many, many hours of her time. Constructive criticism and ideas for the site should be directed to me.

This next meeting should be informative as we begin removing our crop and learning how to extract, bottle and package our products. I expect a good turn out, so bee on time. We can try to share bragging rights over the most productive hive….

If anyone is interested in organizing a stat sheet on BCBA beekeepers number of hives, honey production, equipment, deceases and other data let me know. I think over time it would be interesting to keep statistics on club member hives.

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Barnstable County Fair Update
Now that the fair is over and you have some honey to process, keep the following date in mind: Saturday, September 21st is the Farm Bureau/Cape Cod Extension’s Harvest Festival, held at the Fairgrounds, Route 151, East Falmouth, from 10 AM to 4 PM. The bee building will be open, the display up, and honey may be sold. Again, we have folks looking for honey from their particular area to help in alleviating allergies. If you have 10 or 20 pounds more than you know what to do with, and you want to sell some honey, or other hive products, come and do a 2-hour stint. Call Claire (508-888-2304) to include yourself.

BCBA Clothing
We would like to remind you that we do have attractive BCBA tee shirts ($10) and golf shirts ($23) that you may proudly wear to any gathering and start an instant conversation. They will be available to purchase at the September meeting. And, it’s not too early to start thinking about holiday presents. That brings us to BCBA cookbooks. Plan on giving honey this year to family and friends? Why not complement that gift with a cookbook; available for $5.

By the time this newsletter is in your hands, all of the glassware we ordered should have arrived. If Ed has not yet contacted you regarding the order you placed, you can now call him at 508-833-9696.

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Hive Opening
Geoff Lenk and Carl Monge are teaming up to have a hive opening at 1 P.M. on Sunday, September 15th, with a rain date (will it ever rain again?) of the 22nd. It will take place at the Armstrong-Kelley Park in Osterville, right across from the E.E.C. Swift market. You have to go just to see this beautiful public garden.

While at the E.A.S. conference at Cornell University, we did purchase quantities of Fumidil-B and Apistan Strips for members to use this fall. We buy in bulk and break it down to “single-servings” to make it easier and more economical for members to use. Unfortunately, ApiLife Var will not be available again this year. Terramycin patties are not recommended for use in the hive. If there is evidence of Foulbrood, treatment with Terramycin Powder is the recommended therapy. It is thought that the low dose of Terramycin in the patty formulation has helped to foster the resistance that is being displayed.

Fumidil-B is placed in a gallon of 2:1 sugar syrup to be fed in the fall. The bees store this thick syrup and consume it over the winter. The Fumidil helps to ward off Nosema, which causes a dysentery-like affliction.

If warranted by a high mite count, Apistan is recommended at the rate of 1 strip per five frames of bees. It should be placed in the hive around the first of October (after honey supers are removed) and left in for 6 weeks. They must be removed no later than Thanksgiving.

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Claire’s Corner
Got honey? Let us know! As you harvest and process your honey, please call 508-888-2304 if you have excess for sale. We always get calls from folks requesting local honey. We would be happy to pass on your name and phone number.

Probably the most important information that we brought back from the conference is the continuing importance of Integrated Pest Management. Terramycin should not be used unless there is a definite diagnosis of American Foulbrood. Resistance to this drug is building due to indiscriminate use. As both Formic Acid and ApiLife Var remain unavailable and tangled in the EPA web, we must still rely on grease patties for Trachea mites, and Apistan to counter Varroa.

The use of Apistan should be in the fall; only after honey shallows are removed. Ideally, one should have taken a count on the sticky board. According to Dr. Dewey Caron, of the University of Delaware, the threshold is a natural drop of about 50 mites per day, taken as a 3-day average on a sticky board under a screened bottom. A 50 mite per day drop equates to approximately 3,000 mites in your hive. Yes, your bees can survive with these numbers without treatment; but with higher drop rates, you should use 1 Apistan Strip for each 5 frames of bees.

The value of the screened bottom board was reiterated from workshop to workshop. Not only does it aid in lowering the varroa count but also helps with ventilation, even into the winter. One noticeable disadvantage has been documented. Early spring buildup in January and February is being delayed due to the cooler hive environment. It was suggested that by mid-January we should replace the sticky board to block the cooler temperature as the queen begins her egg-laying season. Schedule its removal in early April as the air temperature warms.

(As an aside, for those making their own screened bottoms, Bruce Mogardo reports that Botello Lumber, in Mashpee, stocks 1/8 mesh, and sells it by the foot.)

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Library Additions
While at E.A.S., we also added to the library. We purchased (3) more copies of Dr. Keith Delaplane’s video, Honey Bees & Beekeeping – A Year in the Life of an Apiary, an excellent primer on beekeeping, and a copy of Dr. Diana Sammataro’s book, The Beekeeper’s Handbook. We also purchased a new set of study prints, which have yet to be laminated. These are great if you are doing any presentations. And, speaking of presentations, we purchased a Tew Traveling Hive. This is a one-frame demonstration hive, complete with carrying strap, that you can load from your hive, take to schools, clubs, nursing homes, etc., make your presentation, come home and unload your bees back into your hive. This item will be at the September meeting for you to see. We also purchased two more copies of the Australian video, The Mysterious Bee. If you saw the portion that was viewed at the meeting on swarms, you know how great the photography is. One other addition to the library is a copy of Honey: The Gourmet Medicine by Joe Traynor .

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  • Ed Osmun has a new heated uncapping plane (still in the box) for sale. Ed is asking $50. 508-833-9696

  • Geoff Lenk has a 2-frame manual extractor to lend 508-888-1326
back to top Last updated 09/05/02