Some of the cancellations and rules connected with Corona virus may be overkill, but it seems best at this time to simply not hold any further SABA beginner classes in the classroom. Chances are, even if we did, very few students would come!
Please email Kirt, our treasurer, to deal with refunds or to save your payment as is and simply join classes in spring 2021, already paid. He will put you on a list for that and you will get a reminder next spring. Bear in mind, Kirt is also dealing with our annual seminar refunds right now and he works full time, too!
We still have high hopes for us to hold a bee yard class in Burnt Hills in mid May. This will be announced 2-3 weeks ahead.
Also, we’re working on a Google Slides version of the classes, which we can Share with all of you. Any member who has questions on starting or proceeding with our favorite pastime should try having conversations on the Google Groups Forum Ian set up some years ago. You sign up on the website, adirondackbees.org. A few digital pictures always helps, too. Check out the older questions, as that may also cover your current bee situation.
Of course, you have your book(s), and we recommend reading all of them! Or, just focus now on the basics, like building equipment, installing new bees, getting comb drawn. Use the index in the back to easily look up exactly your keywords.
Many people at this time of year are cleaning up equipment, whether from a dead hive, or from the shed. It’s a good time to get this chore done, especially with deadouts, because dead bees are beginning to get moldy, with freezing temps past. A coldish day will let you work on thoroughly dealing with frames and boxes without bees being attracted. Remember, if you have drawn comb, it is a valuable part of your beekeeping system. But if it’s not drawn well, or is as dark as Coca Cola, it should be taken out of operation and melted down.
The next thing a beginner is likely to need help with is installing a package or nuc. We did cover one way to install a package in class, and there are other ways. The main thing is for packages to be installed within a day or two, since they may not have much syrup in their can. Then, feed them 50:50 sugar syrup in the hive.
For nucs, the main thing is to place the nuc right at the hive site and open its entrance, even if it’s night when you arrive there. Transfer frames to the full size equipment within a few days. Move frames in one by one and keep them together in the center, filling the side areas with your own frames. Possibly feed them as well, depending on whether weather is above 55 and clear (that means the bees an fly to collect nectar and pollen), and definitely feed if your own frames only have foundation on them.
Ask questions! your club is still here for you. Looking at other online teaching options…
Anne Frey, Ian Munger