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What’s Bothering My Mason Bees?

The parasitic wasp genus Monodontomerus shows up just as the mason bee season is coming to a close. The wasps are very tiny, perhaps fruit fly size, and fly with a nervous, side-to-side pattern that makes them look guilty.

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Will a Newly Installed Nuc Swarm?

The appearance of a single swarm cell doesn’t mean much. Some colonies repeatedly build queen cups and swarm cells only to tear them down later. We don’t know why they do it, but it may just be a case of being prepared.

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Will Spraying Dandelions Harm Bees?

My son is thinking of spraying 2,4-D for the dandelions — how safe is it for the bees? All the bees died this winter.

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What Does a Caught Swarm Need to Thrive?

I just caught my first swarm by placing a deep hive body on top of a very active swarm on a low brush pile. When I got the deep back to the yard, I installed a frame feeder and a top feeder as well as a pollen patty. I inspected the hive yesterday afternoon, and it is packed out with bees (maybe 5-6 lbs ).

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Should I be Worried About my Walkaway Split?

There are a couple of versions of a split (or divide) that simulate this. One is by using swarm cells in the split(s). The other, which it sounds like is what you did, we call a “walkaway split.” I just did one yesterday so I’ll explain how I did it.

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Reversing Brood Boxes in the Spring — Is it Necessary?

Many beekeepers begin spring by “reversing brood boxes,” which just means switching the two so that the cluster is on the bottom. Some beekeepers do this routinely, while some never do it. It’s not necessary because, as the brood nest expands, the queen will eventually begin laying in the bottom box, especially if you use a queen excluder to keep the queen out of the honey supers. Whether you reverse the boxes is just a matter of beekeeper preference.

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What are the Pros and Cons of Using Nine Frames vs 10 Frames?

What are the pros and cons of using nine frames in the brood boxes? If one wished go from nine frames to 10 frames, how should it be done?

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Why Do My Colonies Keep Swarming?

I have three hives started last year and all three swarmed in the last week. Now, they are swarming again — the same colonies. Why do the same colonies keep swarming every few days?

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Why Are There So Many Bee Droppings on the Outside of my Hives?

I am an urban beekeeper in Cleveland. We over-wintered our bees in two deeps. The bees largely remained in the top box all winter. We have had a cold wet, snowy spring. I have been noticing bee poop pretty much all over the outside of the hive.

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Why Did My Newly Installed Bees Make a Queen Cell?

Mary writes … Today was inspection day and I found what appears to be a queen cell … yikes!

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