Experience is a brutal teacher. But you learn, my God, do you learn.

-C.S. Lewis

Stream In January

Stream In January

Friday, January 9, 2009

Bee Education

Our temperatures have warmed to the lower 40's this afternoon. I was relieved to see the girls out and about after a few days of really rainy, windy and snowy days. I'm a member of the Smoky Mountain Chapter of Beekeepers and at our meeting last night, most everyone was reporting their bees to be flying and bringing in small amounts of pollen. Though our weather has been rainy, it has been fairly mild, so the bees are getting out for cleansing flights. Some of the beekeepers are feeding, others whose bees have a good supply of honey in the supers, are not. It was also mentioned that the bees are looking for sources of protein and some are adding protein patties. I'm already feeding because of low honey stores in my super. I'll consider doing the protein next week.

I'm excited because I learned of 2 upcoming events for out Chapter. Greg Rogers is going to be our speaker in February. He's a very knowledgeable beekeeper in the Asheville area. I heard him speak when I went to bee school in Asheville a couple of years ago. Really looking forward to hearing him again. Also, Jennifer Berry, from the University of Georgia, is going to do a beginner bee school for us in March. I attended one of her sessions at Young Harris bee school last year in May. She is doing wonderful work in the field of honeybee research. Should be another great learning experience for anyone in attendance. I'll check on the dates for both of these events and post later.

I'm trying to take advantage of every opportunity I have to learn more about beekeeping. But I'm also learning that just by having a hive and observing and working with my bees on a daily basis is absolutely the best way for me to understand this wonderful and fascinating art of caring for honeybees.


vicree said...

Lynn, I'm so glad you are posting daily. I look forward to reading about the girls each day, although I don't yet understand all the terms you use. For instance, is a cleansing flight just exactly what it sounds like? And bees need protein? How fascinating!

Lynn said...

Yep. Just Exactly. Bees do not eliminate any waste in the hive, so on nice days in the winter, they leave to do their business. They also do some housekeeping and clean out any bees that may have died and fallen to the bottom of the box. Pollen is their source of protein, so when there is none available, they can benefit from feeding if they have some brood. I've been encouraged for the past couple of weeks because I have seen them bringing in some white and orange pollen. I'm not sure of the source, but I'm glad to see they are finding something blooming this time of year.

MissJenny said...

I love how neat and productive bees are. We humans could learn a lot from them!

Lynn said...

I hope a lot more people will begin to realize how important bees are to us. They amazing little bugs!