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2015 Open Apiaries

Would you like to learn more about honeybees and beekeeping?  Are you curious about seeing the inside of a beehive?  Then come to our monthly Open Apiary.  You will be given a guided tour of the inside of a beehive by an actual beekeeper. Our apiary tours are held at our Community Apiary in the Homewood Neighborhood of Pittsburgh. 6933 Susquehanna St., Pittsburgh, 15208

Protective head gear will be provided.  Please wear or bring long a long sleeved shirt, preferably with a collar, and long pants (no Capris or shorts please!)  Also, closed toed shoes such as sneakers are recommended.  Honeybees are gentle but we want to keep as covered up as possible.

A donation of $10 per person is appreciated.

Open Apiaries are limited to 15 people so please register early.  RSVP by email to Lynnetta Miller (lynnettam@burghbees.com) by 5pm on the Friday before the scheduled Open Apiary.

The tentative schedule is below.  Actual dates will be determined by weather and will be posted in the events section on our website.  Saturdays will start at 11am (gates close at 11:15am – no late arrivals are permitted. Sundays and will start at 1pm (gate closes at 1:15pm – no late arrivals are permitted).  Please allow 2 hours.

Saturday May 30 (11am)
Saturday, June 27 (11am) canceled due to rain
Saturday, July 25 (11am)
Sunday, Aug 23 (1pm)
Sunday, Sept 20 Sept 27 (1pm)

We have also partnered with Penn State’s Master Gardener Program.  We will have students from the Master Gardener program on hand to discuss pollination and pollinator friendly gardens.

 

By |May 15th, 2015|Apiary, FrontPage, Highlight|Comments Off|

BK 101W – Beekeeping 101 in the Apiary

Beekeeping 101 in the Apiary
Saturday, May 9th 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Homewood Apiary 6900 Block Susquehanna St
This field-based workshop will focus on techniques of how to do a complete hive inspection, identification of all stages of brood, castes of bees, proper handling of frames, and other related topics.
Cost: $10 for Burgh Bees members or $20 for non-members
Prerequisites: BK101 or currently managing hives

By |April 15th, 2015|Apiary, FrontPage|Comments Off|

2015 Burgh Bees Board of Directors

Elections were held at the November Membership Meeting and Banquet.
The 2015 elected Board of Directors is as follows.

President, Steve Repasky
Vice President, Lynnetta Miller
Treasurer, Tom Beattie
Secretary, Bob Tatro
3 Year Director, Felix Yerace
2 Year Director, Richard Deriso
Director, Philip Bauerle
Director, Jeff Shaw
Director, Kyle Pattison
Director, Neal Washington

Thank you to our out going directors and welcome to our new directors!

By |December 31st, 2014|FrontPage|Comments Off|

Installing Packages

Installing Packages
Written by Steve Repasky

Safety is important and even though bees can be gently, when installing a package of
bees, you should wear a veil and take appropriate precautions to prevent bees from
crawling up you pant legs. You also will need a hive tool, a small nail, a couple of large
rubber bands, a spray bottle filled with sugar syrup (1:1), and one or more gallons of 1:1
sugar syrup to feed the new colony. Your equipment should already be set up days in
advance of your bees arriving.

1. Carefully inspect the bees to make sure they are alive and in good health (it is normal
to have up to about one inch of dead bees in the bottom of the box). Spray the bees
with sugar syrup- a light spray will do – no need to make them wet.

2. Make sure the bees are not exposed to excessive heat or cold. Periodically, if not
installing immediately, 3-4 times a day spray the bees with 1:1 sugar syrup until you are
ready to install the bees into a hive.

3. Be sure to keep your hands away from the screened sides of the package to avoid
getting stung through the screen. Place the package on the ground in a shaded area or
inside if temperatures are below 50.

4. Remove three or four frames from the center of the brood chamber to create a space
in the hive for the bees.

5. Give the package a good knock on the hive or the ground to knock the bees into the
bottom of the cage. With the hive tool, remove the wooden panel from the package of
bees. Gently remove the feeder can and queen cage [...]

By |April 7th, 2014|FrontPage, Highlight|Comments Off|

Spring Feeding

Feeding Honey Bees
Written by Steve Repasky

In the spring it is often necessary to provide new or weak colonies with supplemental feed in the form of sugar. White table sugar (sucrose) mixed with water to create sugar syrup is simple and preferred mixture to feed honey bees. Sugar syrup fed in the spring should be one part sugar and one part water (1:1), either by weight or by volume. Fall feeding requires a thicker syrup (2:1) and we will discuss this in a later topic.

In the spring thick/concentrated sugar syrup can cause digestive problems since the bees are trying to consume it for immediate use to build comb and feed larvae. Generally the bees will accept syrup mixtures with a ratio between 1:1 and 2:1 anytime of year without significant problems so it is not necessary to measure the ratio exactly. The recommended syrup ratios is a general guideline.

Hot tap water should be sufficient to dissolve table sugar for making 1:1. Overheating (boiling) sugar syrup on the stovetop can make the mixture difficult to digest due to caramelizing (oxidation) of the sugar and is harmful to the bees.

Calculating ratios is simple. One gallon of water weighs 8.35 pounds. So a 1:1 ratio would be approximately eight pounds of table sugar to one gallon of water.

An easy way to transport sugar syrup to the hive is in clean, one gallon plastic jugs. They are also very convenient for pouring into the feeder. There are many methods to feed sugar syrup. Feeders that are placed either inside the hive or directly on top of the hive are generally preferred because the syrup is readily available to the hive and it is difficult for stronger colonies to [...]

By |April 7th, 2014|FrontPage, Highlight|Comments Off|

Bee Keeping 101 – Starts Monday, January 13th

This three evening classroom-based course offers beginning beekeepers an introduction to honey bee biology and basic approaches to beekeeping. The course will include: an overview of honey bee castes and races, a discussion of bee biology in order to understand the challenges facing honey bees, and an overview of the basic equipment necessary for successful beekeeping. The goal is for students to learn how to keep bees for the first year.

The three classes will be held on: Monday January 13th, Wednesday January 15th and Monday January 20th 6:00 pm to 9:30 pm

Where: Penn State Extension of Allegheny County, 400 N Lexington St, 3rd Floor Pittsburgh, PA 15208

Registration will be available on our new website. Space is limited. REGISTER HERE (http://burghbees.com/?product=beekeeping-101)

By |October 23rd, 2013|FrontPage, Highlight|Comments Off|

Xerces Pollinator Conservation Short Course

There will be a Xerces Pollinator Conservation Short Course at Penn State on August 14, the Society for Invertebrate Pathology Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh, PA on August 11-15, and the Eastern Apicultural Society Annual Meeting in West Chester, PA on August 5-9.

For more information on the International Pollinator Conference, please contact the conference organizers, Christina Grozinger (cmg25@psu.edu), Chris Mullin (camullin@psu.edu), and Neal Willliams (nmwilliams@ucdavis.edu). The conference is supported by Penn State’s Center for Pollinator Research, Department of Entomology, College of Agricultural Sciences and the Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences. We are also grateful for the generous support of Bayer, BASF, and Ernst Conservation Seeds.

We look forward to seeing you in August!

By |February 25th, 2013|FrontPage, Highlight|Comments Off|
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    International Conference on Pollinator Biology, Policy and Health

International Conference on Pollinator Biology, Policy and Health

Registration for the 2013 International Conference on Pollinator Biology, Policy and Health is now open! The conference will be held at Penn State from August 14-17, 2013. For more information and to register and submit abstracts, please see:

http://agsci.psu.edu/pollinator-conference

We have an outstanding group of internationally renowned speakers, with sessions including behavioral ecology, physiology and development, host-parasite interactions, ecology and conservation, ecosystems services, and policy. A theme of the conference will be examining and mitigating the effects of environmental contaminants on pollinators.

The deadline for submission of abstracts for oral and poster presentations is May 15, and the early registration deadline is July 1.

By |February 25th, 2013|FrontPage, Highlight|Comments Off|

Beginning Beekeeping Out yard Demonstration

An out yard beekeeping demonstration meeting for new beekeepers is set for Saturday May 4, 2013. The program will be conducted at the Pennsylvania Railroad Supervisors Club about 950 Tevebaugh Hollow Road, Freedom, PA 15042.  The time of the meeting will be 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM.

More details are located here.

By |February 25th, 2013|FrontPage, Highlight|Comments Off|

Top Bar Hive Class, March 16 and 17

Top Bar Hive Class
Interest in Top Bar hives has grown in the last several years and there are a few folks out there who keep them in the Pittsburgh area. It’s not a common beekeeping practice, but Burgh Bees has joined with Gold Star Honeybees of Maine to put on this one time event to allow some insight of the pros and cons of top bar beekeeping and how to manage them so that you can succeed. This class will be offered with limited spaces. These classes draw folks from several states so don’t wait to register!

Class Details:
When: March 16 and 17, 2013. 8:30am to 4:00pm with an hour lunch at noon.
Where: Penn State Extension of Allegheny County. 400 Lexington Street – 3rd floor, Pittsburgh.

Early bees catch the buzz, and save $25 off the $175 tuition. Early registration until March 1st.

You can register here: Top Bar Class Registration

By |February 21st, 2013|FrontPage, OurPrograms, UpcomingEvents|Comments Off|