Wax Moth

I would like to talk about a pest previously mentioned in these blogs called the “Wax Moth.” This pest can be a problem all year round especially with stored equipment. Here are some ways to store comb, if you have any other ways to store your equipment please post in the comments. You can use […]

Eggs, Larvae, Pupae, and the Queen

Double click on the comb of the honey bee frame in the picture above to see if you can spot eggs in the cells. Double clicking will zoom in to reveal much more detail.

Dead out pests and more inhabitants of the hive.

  When a honey bee colony dies there a number of insects that will invade the hive and take advantage of the resources left over. Often, the first insect to move in is the wax moth and they can be a pest before the colony is even completely dead. These moths usually move into colonies […]

Battles at the Entrance

As fall approaches and forage becomes scarce, honey bees become more aggressive to protecting their honey crop. The honey crop is collected throughout the spring and summer. They use the stored honey throughout the winter to fuel their survival by beating their flight muscles to generate heat to warm the colony. The honey becomes very […]

Field Notes and Hive Inspection

  Not taking notes while inspecting your hives is like going to Yellowstone without bringing a camera.  You might still get what you want out of the experience but you will have no snapshots of things you might otherwise forget.  Organizing your observations into a notebook or spreadsheet during a hive inspection will provide information […]

Almonds, pollination and harvesting

To get almonds you need pollinators. Above is an image of a handful of honey bee colonies out in an orchard during the almond bloom. This pollination starts at the end of January and throughout February depending on weather. There are close to a million honey bee colonies in California during the time of this […]

Differentiated Females

Two weeks ago while inspecting some hives just outside of Willows, CA I shot the video of this queen. She caught my attention because of the distinct striping on her abdomen. Rob Snyder and I were in Willows to inspect and sample hives that were in sunflowers for pollination service. Tomorrow I have a presentation […]


Thousands of queens are raised and sold around the country. But how does one get their bees to raise all these extra queens? The secret lies within manipulating the bees own biology (as does most of beekeeping). There are two types of eggs in the colony: unfertilized and fertilized. The unfertilized eggs will become drones […]

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