Nectar, Pollen and Pollen Substitute: Keys to a healthy colonly

In this blog I will talk about nectar, pollen and my theories on how honey bees utilize pollen/substitute patties and dry pollen substitute. So why do honey bees collect pollen? It would be hard to ask this question without asking why they collect nectar. Honey bees collect nectar from the nectaries of plants, which are […]


I am continuously impressed with the seemingly endless wealth of knowledge beekeepers accumulate over the years. Whether that knowledge is passed down from generation to generation, a product of their own curiosity, or a combination of both; a successful beekeeper, more often than not, possesses a fundamental knowledge of the topography of the land on […]

Hurricane Sandy and the Seabees

Last weekend the east coast was hammered by Hurricane Sandy. Thankfully, all of us at the University of Maryland lab made it through unscathed, but some areas of the East Coast weren’t so lucky. My heart goes out to everyone who experienced flooding and devastation. I kept my parents company during the hurricane at their home on […]

Whats wrong with my hive?

To determine if something is wrong with your hive, you must first know what a healthy, productive hive looks like. Knowing what a healthy colony looks like takes time, patience, and many hours in the hive to get a feel of what is going on in the colony throughout the year. Sometime the colony does […]

Fall: Cycle of Northern California Bee Breeder

This is the final installment of a 3 piece blog that summarized a year in the life of a Northern California Bee Breeder. We are quickly approaching the end of October and beekeepers in the area are closer and closer to giving their bees a much needed rest. October and November are the culmination of […]

Yellow Jackets

With winter approaching and food sources dwindling honey bee colonies are starting to be harassed by pests. Yellow Jackets are one of the most common pests, they feed on bees, larva, brood, honey bee bread and pretty much anything they can take advantage of in the hive. During this time of year when robbing becomes […]

Summer: Cycle of Northern California Bee Breeder

The graphic above illustrates the basic cycle of beekeeping during the summer season in northern California. Things like applying treatments and feeding are management decisions based on what the bees are doing in response to the environment around them. Feeding and treating is operation specific and location dependent. Think of treatment windows in terms of […]

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