Ask the Expert

Can I Raise Bees on Forest Land?
February 19, 2022 · · Ask the Expert

Honey bees are adept at finding seepages from hillsides, moist layers of moss, morning dew, and even traces of water in soil where another animal has been digging. Most of their water will come from nectar, and even in the driest areas, something is usually in bloom.

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Are Infrared Cameras in the Winter Necessary?

In the past few years, the number of electronic devices for beekeepers has mushroomed. I’ve frequently been asked to test these new devices, so I have quite a bit of experience with them.

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What are Ankle-Biter Bees?
January 12, 2022 · · Ask the Expert

Purdue ankle-biters are a type of honey bee developed at Purdue University after beekeepers noticed that some honey bees bit the legs off dislodged varroa mites. Individual bees with this hygienic trait were inbred in order to increase the incidence of the genetic alleles that produced the behavior. The result of this breeding program yielded the so-called ankle-biters.

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Is Fondant Actually Detrimental to Bees?

When you cook sugar or add an acid such as vinegar or cream of tartar, you break the molecular bonds that hold sucrose together and end up with the two simple sugars. It’s the fructose portion that causes the problem. When fructose is heated it produces hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF), which is toxic to bees.

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I Found a Dead Queen on My Landing Board. Now What?

I live just outside of Seattle. Yesterday I found a queen dead on the landing board of my top bar hive. She was with two worker bees that were alive. I am not sure what they were doing. Pushing her off of the ledge?

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Can I Save My Plastic Frames with Wax Moth Damage?

Freezing is the very best way to kill wax moths on frames, whether it’s made of wood or plastic. Freezing is effective because it kills all life stages of the moth: eggs, larvae, pupae, and adults.

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Were My Bees Poisoned?

I believe one of my hives was poisoned. There is a pile in front of the hive. This colony was a combination of two weak splits waiting for a queen. (I used the newspaper method to combine them. ) My first impression was that my combination of the two hives had caused the dissonance and the death of the bees in front of the hive. After further investigation, I found that most of the dead bees had tongues hanging out. I realized it might be a pesticide. Now my question is how can I protect the other five hives? None of them had the pile of bees in front.

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Why Did My Bees Die?

Dead bees head-down in cells is a common occurrence, but beekeepers seldom agree about the cause. The most commonly heard theory is that the bees could not find food and died licking the remaining molecules off the bottom of the comb.

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What’s Wrong with My Filtered Beeswax?

Filtering beeswax can take a bit of trial and error as you get a feel for the process. However, with a bit of practice, you’ll be an old pro in no time. So first, let’s talk about the bubbles you’re seeing in your wax as that’s the first indicator of what is most likely the underlying cause of your multi-shaded wax.

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Should I Leave Supers on For the Winter?

Should I leave supers on for the winter?

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