It’s very important to treat your bee colonies for varroa mites before they make their “winter bees” at the end of the season.
Varroa mites feed on larvae and cause honey bees to have shorter lifespans. If your colony raises winter bees while they have mites in the hive, those winter bees will not survive through the whole winter. As bees die earlier, the winter cluster gets smaller and at some point, the colony doesn’t have enough bees to keep warm through winter (even though they may have plenty of honey nearby, they cannot reach it because the cluster is too cold).
If you still have honey supers on top of the hive, we recommend Formic Pro Strips or Hopguard, as they can be used while you have honey supers on.
If you already removed supers you can still treat for mites with the same two products or even use Oxalic Acid.
Formic Pro is more convenient for the beekeepers that have one to 10 hives, with Oxalic acid becoming more convenient for beekeepers with more hives.
People with orders will receive confirmation email about pick up schedule as we get close to nuc pick up day. We will spread pick up schedule to avoid many people coming at once. If you have an order, you will receive your personalized email about pickup schedule.
Please make sure that you receive BeeManiacs emails and that you check regularly the email account you entered when placing the order.
Bees in a package are very vulnerable and have a limited capability to regulate temperature and airflow. They depend on the beekeeper to provide the right environment during transport.
Once you have your package/s, we recommend you to go to your bee yard and install the bees as soon as possible.
We do not recommend transporting packages on the back of pick up trucks (unless you have some type of enclosure to protect the bees while allowing some ariflow). There could be too much airflow (cold air) or too much sun or even rain. Car trunks are not a good idea either, because they could get too hot and the lack of ventilation.
It would be better for the bees to ride in the vehicle with the beekeeper, with average or “room” temperatures. The longer the trip home, the more important it is to provide the right travel environment.
Just transport the package/s as you would a pet. Don’t leave the package inside a parked car (it could get too hot or too cold).
If you bring someone along for the ride, make sure they are comfortable with sharing the car with thousands of bees.
It may be a good idea to bring a veil or any protective gear, just in case.
Installing the package
Try to install the package mid-afternoon, to prevent robbing from existing colonies and reducing the chances of absconding.
Get the hive set up and ready to receive the bees ahead of time.
Take into account that the package is installed in one single box. If you bought a hive kit with multiple boxes, just use the first one. If you have a non-conventional hive, like top-bar, horizontal or AZ Slovenian hive, please note that you have to use follower boards or some kind of divider to make the chamber where the package is installed smaller.
You will need to feed the bees with sugar syrup (mix of granulated sugar and water 1:1) so make sure to have enough sugar and a feeder to deliver the syrup close to the bees.
A package that is installed correctly will start drawing out comb, have brood, and expand for the rest of the season. If there’s something wrong with the queen or the colony, we have about 7 days to solve the problem.
But when the conditions for the package are bad, all the bees could die within three days, without having a chance of establishing the colony (for example due to lack of syrup feed or if installed in a hive that is too big or has too many boxes).
Please note that if you ordered a package of bees through BeeManiacs, we are sending updates and notices to the email used when placing the order. Emails are received from “BeeManiacs” and using the MailChimp email distribution server. Just in case anyone didn’t receive the email, we’re also adding the content as a post.
Package pickup hours are from 8 am to noon on this Saturday, April 18.
Due to COVID-19 we will operate a drive-thru style pickup for this Saturday and we have recommended pick up hours based on the first name of the beekeeper that placed the order for packages.
The table below shows the suggested hours for picking up packages, based on which letter your name starts with. These are just suggestions to spread the number of cars during the whole pickup schedule, avoiding a traffic jam. If you cannot come at the recommended time, you can come at any time between 8:00 am and noon.
For example, if your name is Lisa, we recommend that you come to pick up your packages between 9:30 and 10:00 am.
You can enter BeeManiacs from the main entrance and head towards the Big Barn where the drive-thru line forms
While in the line, a BeeManiacs employee will approach and ask for the name of the person that placed the order
At that point, BeeManiacs staff will set your packages and any material you pre-ordered online at the pickup area (on top of a table or on the cement floor)
Stay in the line and continue driving until you reach the pickup area (concrete area outside the Big Barn)
You may now get out of your vehicle and load your bees/material
To exit, continue driving around the garden and BeeManiacs store building until you reach the main road
Please note that our store remains closed due to COVID-19. You can place online orders ahead of time (until Friday 17) and we will have the material ready for you to pick up with the bees.
Even though the bad weather has delayed queen production this year and caused a delay on our package day, we will be able to bring some extra Saskatraz queens on the same trip.
Most queen producers are fully sold out until July, so we’re very happy to be able to bring some queens with us. Pickup date is still to be determined, but the queens will arrive the same day the packages do.
If you wanted to try Saskatraz bees but didn’t need to buy any packages, this is your chance to get some Saskatraz queens and introduce them to your splits.
This is the only time we will bring bring Saskatraz queens this year.
Our first Beekeeping 101 class for March 31 has filled up, so we decided to open another Beekeeping 101 class on Sunday, April 7. This April 7 class will cover the exact same content than the class on March 31.
If you are starting beekeeping in 2019 we recommend you to take a class first.
Since most classes in the area are already fully booked, we will try to continue opening new Beekeeping 101 classes at BeeManiacs, trying to cover the needs of all new beekeepers in the area.
You can start ordering bees for your 2019 season right now.
You can find information about packages, nucs and starter hives on each product page, including the current estimated pick up date.
If you order early, you can save. For example, the price for our high-quality packages from Olivarez Honey Bees is $150, but we will start with early purchase discounts. The first batch will sell for $130 and price will increase as we run out of bees on sale.
It’s that time of the year when most beekeepers in the Inland Northwest finished checking their hives, treating for mites, and feeding when needed.
There’s no much beekeeping activity left, so we usually close our store for the season.
The BeeManiacs online store remains open 24/7/365 though. If you need any beekeeping material, you can place an order online and we will ship it to you or you can still select “pick up at the store” and we will schedule an appointment for you to pick up your order.
If you rather buy items at the store in person, we can open by appointment. Just send us an email to [email protected] and we will schedule your visit.
We will open again for regular hours of Friday, February 15, 2019.