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May 2022 Bee Meeting minutes


Buzz’s bee is not associated with the local individual going by Bitterroot Buzz Bees.

Bees are building up getting ready for the nectar flow

Mites are building up and lag slightly behind the bees

We are now entering season

Ensure the bees have nectar coming in or syrup

If in doubt add a box to help prevent swarming

Good time for splits

Queen ordering

Splits help aid in preventing swarms

Mite Control Options

·         Apivar - Chemical Treatment using Amatraz

·         Apiguard - Organic Treatment using Thyme

·         Oxalic Acid - Organic Treatment using Oxalic Vaporization or Drench

·         MAQS - Organic Treatment using Formic Acid

Testing for mites

·         Sticky board 

·         Alcohol wash

o    ½ 300 bees

o    1% = 3 mites

·         Powdered sugar roll

·         Uncapping drone larvae 

·         IPM 2%-3%


Split Types

·         Walk away split 

o    Uses emergency cells

o    Time to laying queen 24 days

o    Time to emerging brood 21 days 

·         Swarm Cells

o    May prevent swarming

o    Good viable queens, created on purpose

o    Can make up multiple splits

·         Mated Queens

o    Quick to start laying

o    Expensive with shipping

o    Not guaranteed

·         Queen Cups

o    Needs time to emerge

o    Requires successful mating flight

Splits requires resources to make a complete colony, workers and a queen

·         Multiple frames of bees and brood

·         Shook swarm or package

·         Provisions for a queen

Splits help eliminate swarming impulses with strong spring colonies

Increase apiary size

Making up splits

·         Shook Swarm or package not a common method with hobbyists

·         Shake bees down and add and excluder, top box is split

·         Move frames and leave the queen with the parent hive

·         Leave the bees queen less for a short period of time then introduce a caged queen

·         Split can be move or left in the same bee yard

o    Same bee yard older bees will fly home

o    Moving bees needs to bee 3+ miles away

Swarm intervention

Incredible natural phenomenon

Reproduction of a colony

Prime Swarms and After Swarms

Unanimous decision deciding on a new home

Swarm season April to July but can happen anytime

Younger queens have a tendency to stay home

Like a good neighbor

Increase cavity size - May rule add a box

·         If treatments aren’t complete add a brood box

·         Add honey supers after treatments or if honey is not marketable

Tumbling boxes - reverse boxes putting empty frames on top

·         Can split brood nest 

·         In cooler weather top box gets the warm air

Checker boarding

·         Add empty or un-drawn frames between brood frames

o    Be careful in cold weather not to split the brood nest too much

o    Good for refreshing new frames


·         Increase apiary size

·         Decrease colony congestion

·         Increase honey harvest

·         Re-combine later in the season

·         Sell the split

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