host a hive

'Bee Well' Alliance Integrative Medicine

Thank you to Teresa Esterle and the Alliance Integrative Medicine team for hosting the Bee Well hive in the Gaiser Bee Company apiary for the 2017 beekeeping season.  We also want to thank you for being one of the first stores to support our mission of saving the bees!

Here, Cory is transferring these frames into the new box.

Here, Cory is transferring these frames into the new box.

INSPECTION DAY MAY 14, 2017

New honeybee colonies can start from a number of sources.  For the Bee Well hive, these girls started from a swarm of honeybees that we were able to rescue from a Cincinnati Public School.  These honeybees were seen by the principal on the school grounds where the children frequent. He was educated on the declining population of honeybees and knew not to spray them but instead to call a beekeeper– so we headed out on April 17th to catch them.

Alliance Integrative Medicine Host A Hive Gaiser Bee Co.

The swarm was right outside of the school where parents pick up/drop off their children and school was almost out so we had to hurry.  We were able to safely remove the bees from the tree and place them into a swarm box without anyone getting stung.

Alliance Integrative Medicine Host a Hive Honey bees Cincinnati Ohio Gaiser Bee Co

We took the bees back to our apiary and let them get acclimated with the area for a few weeks before we did anything to them.  We wanted them to enjoy their home and needed the queen to start laying eggs before we did a full inspection.

Once we opened up the hive to see how they were doing, then placed them into their new custom "Bee Well" Hive, we found they LOVED the new place.  The queen had laid tons of eggs, they were very calm and had a good mix of coloring. (A variety in coloring indicated to us that the colony has a good genetic diversity)

The population was exploding and they were almost ready to move out! During our inspection we noticed that the worker bees were beginning to form queen cells.  Queen cells indicate to us that the hive may be preparing to swarm.  This is not a bad thing– just means they have outgrown their home and are ready to move on.

So what we did was remove the many queen cups and split this hive into 2 hives.  We took frames with plenty of eggs, larva and capped brood (unhatched baby bees) and placed them into a separate box.  Giving this hive empty frames and plenty of room to grow.  So essentially we helped them swarm but did it for them.

There is no egg in the cup, it is just in preparation for one.

There is no egg in the cup, it is just in preparation for one.

Although our goal was to see the queen and mark her with a yellow color to help us find her during our inspections, we were able to see fresh eggs so we know that she was around there somewhere.  So instead of keeping the hive open for longer than we needed to, we put it back together confidently, knowing that they would do great.  Their population was flourishing so we expect them to continue this progress and need another box here soon.

Host A Hive Cincinnati Ohio Honey Bees Swarm

INSPECTION DAY JUNE 9, 2017

On June 9th, we did our second inspection on the 'Bee Well' Hive, and these ladies seemed to be doing fantastic. 

This colony of honeybees is flourishing and quickly growing in numbers. When we opened up the boxes, we noticed the queen seemed to favor laying her eggs in the middle of the hive, so we took the empty frames from the left and right sides of the boxes and put them between every other frame to basically fool the queen into thinking she has more space. The population is doing so well and expanding so quickly that they even started making queen cups– we noticed about three of them!

We couldn't seem to find the queen but we do know she's in there because there were an abundance of eggs and the bees were crafting their queen cups, which means they could potentially swarm. Swarming is the honeybee's natural way of reproducing and essentially creating a new colony because they have outgrown the home they're in currently. The queen cups are a signal to beekeepers to add a new box so there's enough room for the growing population.

They didn't need a new box just yet, so the next time we go down to the apiary for inspections, we will most likely be adding another box to support this thriving population.

Overall, these ladies are looking great. Stay tuned for more info on the next inspection! Be sure to follow this blog for more updates and feel free to leave comments, questions or concerns. 


inspection day august 5, 2017

We went out to the apiary for another inspection on August 5th and decided to treat all of the hives for precautionary reasons. The "Bee Well" Hive was doing so well– the population was booming! We took the top off, looked at a couple frames, determined it was doing exceedingly well, then closed it back up and treated it for mites.

We're getting to that tricky time of summer when it's much too common to find the hives being infiltrated by mites and other unwanted species. We saw these bees had fallen victim so we ended up having to treat them for Parasitic Mite Syndrome(PMS). 

Reports from the Ohio Department of Agriculture are indicating that the varroa mite population this season appears to be excessively high. Varroa mites are minuscule in size but they latch on like ticks and drain the life from the victim. We wanted to see if this was true with our hives so we did a thorough inspection on 10 of the hives in our apiary.  Of those 10 hives, 6 had obvious signs of heavy mite infestation.  Including but not limited to:

  • bees with deformed wing virus
  • poor honey storage
  • spotty brood pattern
  • larva that appears melted in their cells.

But, not to worry! Just because your hive has mites, doesn't mean it's the end of the world– or their world, really. We have started treatment and will be treating every hive in the apiary every five days for the next twenty days to ensure that the brood, currently in the larvae stage, is fully treated and protected from the varroa mite infestation once they hatch and start to grow/work. We believe these ladies will pick themselves back up and become a healthy, thriving colony once again in no time! 

TREATMENTS 

Because of the high number of Varroa mites throughout the entire state of Ohio, we spent the month of August treating all hives.  We did an organic treatment of oxalic acid in 3 treatments, 5-7 days apart in order to treat all capped brood as they hatched.


fall extraction season: late summer - mid fall


Inspection Day September 9, 2017

After treating all of the hives and monitoring the bees behavior throughout the month, we opened their homes back up on September 9th to see how everyone was doing. We specifically went in to check on the status of the Varroa Mite treatment and to see where their food supply is at. 

The treatment looks like it worked tremendously and everyone seems to be happy and healthy! Therefore, we proceeded with checking the food supply and decided to add in some Easter marshmallow candies on the inner cover until we start the feeding for fall. 

Feeding during fall is necessary after extraction season so that the bees can continue building up their food supply for the winter months, before the cold gets here and they're forced to bundle up indoors just like the rest of us!


october 3, 2017 inspection day + final extraction!

On October third, we went to the apiary to gather the frames for our final extraction of the year– the beloved fall honey!

Fall honey is dark in color, plus rich and bold in flavor. It is a bit thicker and more of a dark amber color compared to spring honey. While darker honey is more flavorful and intense than light, it also contains more nutrients; including vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

We didn't pull many frames from the newer colonies this year so the honey you will be receiving will be coming from some of the stronger, more established hives– so yours can continue to thrive. 

The final step, in the first week of November, will be to go through and consolidate some of the colonies and insulate them.

CLICK HERE to see a video of how we will be preparing the hives for winter


We will be sure to keep you updated on our next visit out to the apiary. Be sure to follow this blog for updates and feel free to post any comments, questions or concerns.

Stay tuned!


'Bee Different' Dater Montessori

Thank you ladies of Dater Montessori for hosting a hive in the Gaiser Bee Co. apiary for the 2017 beekeeping season.  It was pleasure having you out to the farm to teach you all about honeybees.  

The first hive "Bee Different" was beautifully decorated and looks fantastic out in the yard! You guys were very creative and we love the bright color choice.


INSPECTION DAY May 14, 2017

New honeybee colonies can start from a number of sources.  For the "Bee Different" hive, these girls started from what is called a package of bees.  These honeybees were from a bee farm in Georgia.  We picked them up in late April and placed them into a temporary home until we had an assembled hive for them.  So on May 14th, after the hives were painted, we took this colony and placed them in their permanent home.

They were living in what is called a "nuc" which is a smaller hive with 5 frames.  We took them and placed them in a 8 frame hive to allow them to grow.  

Upon on inspection, we noticed the population was flourishing!! Their numbers were large, the queen was laying an excellent brood pattern (baby bees) and they were very calm.

This is exactly what you want to see when you do a hive inspection– so they are off to a great start thus far.

After transferring the colony to their new home, we found the queen and marked her with a yellow color. This color will help remind us of her age.  Every year beekeepers will use a universal color chart to mark their queens.  This year that color is yellow.  

We placed this beautiful queen into her new home and let her bee.  She is doing such a great job and everyone looked so wonderful, we didn't want to disturb them any more than we needed to.  Next time we do our inspection we will possibly add on another box to give them more room to move into!

Dater Montessori Host a Hive Gaiser Bee Co.

inspection day august 5, 2017

We went out to the apiary for another inspection on August 5th and decided to treat all of the hives for precautionary reasons. The "Bee Different" Hive was doing so well– the population was booming! We took the top off, looked at a frame, determined it was doing exceedingly well, then closed it right back up and treated it for mites.

We're getting to that tricky time of summer when it's much too common to find the hives being infiltrated by mites and other unwanted species. We saw these bees had fallen victim so we ended up having to treat them for Parasitic Mite Syndrome(PMS). 

Reports from the Ohio Department of Agriculture are indicating that the varroa mite population this season appears to be excessively high. Varroa mites are minuscule in size but they latch on like ticks and drain the life from the victim. We wanted to see if this was true with our hives so we did a thorough inspection on 10 of the hives in our apiary.  Of those 10 hives, 6 had obvious signs of heavy mite infestation.  Including but not limited to:

  • bees with deformed wing virus
  • poor honey storage
  • spotty brood pattern
  • larva that appears melted in their cells.

But, not to worry! Just because your hive has mites, doesn't mean it's the end of the world– or their world, really. We have started treatment and will be treating every hive in the apiary every five days for the next twenty days to ensure that the brood, currently in the larvae stage, is fully treated and protected from the varroa mite infestation once they hatch and start to grow/work. We believe these ladies will pick themselves back up and become a healthy, thriving colony once again in no time! 

TREATMENTS 

Because of the high number of Varroa mites throughout the entire state of Ohio, we spent the month of August treating all hives.  We did an organic treatment of oxalic acid in 3 treatments, 5-7 days apart in order to treat all capped brood as they hatched.

We will be sure to keep you updated on our next visit out to the apiary. Be sure to follow this blog for updates and feel free to post any comments, questions or concerns.

Stay tuned!


fall extraction season: late summer - fall


Inspection Day September 9, 2017

After treating all of the hives and monitoring the bees behavior throughout the month, we opened their homes back up on September 9th to see how everyone was doing. We specifically went in to check on the status of the Varroa Mite treatment and to see where their food supply is at. 

The treatment looks like it worked tremendously and everyone seems to be happy and healthy! Therefore, we proceeded with checking the food supply and decided to add in some Easter marshmallow candies on the inner cover until we start the feeding for fall. 

Feeding during fall is necessary after extraction season so that the bees can continue building up their food supply for the winter months, before the cold gets here. 


october 3, 2017 inspection day + final extraction!

On October third, we went to the apiary to gather the frames for our final extraction of the year– the beloved fall honey!

Fall honey is dark in color, plus rich and bold in flavor. It is a bit thicker and more of a dark amber color compared to spring honey. While darker honey is more flavorful and intense than light, it also contains more nutrients; including vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

We didn't pull many frames from the newer colonies this year so the honey you will be receiving will be coming from some of the stronger, more established hives– so yours can continue to thrive. 

The final step, in the first week of November, will be to go through and consolidate some of the colonies and insulate them.

CLICK HERE to see a video of how we will be preparing the hives for winter


Cincinnati Waldorf School

Thank you to the staff, parents and students at Cincinnati Waldorf School for not only coming out and spending the day on the farm to learn all about honeybees, chickens and goats;  but for helping us save the bees by hosting a hive in Gaiser Bee Co. apiary for the 2017 season.

It was a pleasure having everyone out and the kids were wonderful. We hope to see you guys again soon!

Cincinnati Waldorf School Host a Hive Gaiser Bee Co. Cincinnati Ohio

The Cincinnati Waldorf Hive

New honeybee colonies can start from a number of sources.  For the Cincinnati Waldorf Hive, these girls started from what is called a swarm.  These honeybees were rescued from a tree in North College Hill on May 8th.  We got a late call from a resident in the area who was concerned they would be sprayed and harmed by someone if we didn't get them.  Right away we headed over and suited up.

The tree was right off the street and the bees were about 12-15 ft up.

The tree was right off the street and the bees were about 12-15 ft up.

Cory checked out the hive to see if he was able to spot the queen right away but no luck.  So we geared up and got the tools ready to gently brush the bees into a swarm box.

The bees did great.  We were able to get almost all of them into the swarm box without anyone getting stung!  This is a strong indicator that we were able to get the queen in the box.  The worker bees and drones will follow the queens scent, so by getting her into the box, you are able to lure in the rest. Sometimes her scent can be left behind on the tree or wherever they landed, so you may have some stragglers.

Once we got the hive back to our apiary we removed the tissue we had closing off the entrance for transporting purposes.  Now that they are in a new place they will come out and explore their surroundings.

Opening up the swarm to transfer them into their new home.

INSPECTION DAY June 6th

After the school visited, we waited a while before checking the hive.  Glad we did too, because they were some busy bees in there building up wax, storing pollen and even nectar.  They seem to love their new home.

Cory began transferring the frames one at a time into the beautiful new home hand painted by the students at Waldorf school.  With each frame he made sure to check for a queen.  It is always a good idea to try and find your queen during inspections so that you can set her aside and be sure not to hurt her.  In the case of a swarm, you want to try to find her to see if she is marked and to inspect her condition.

Can you see the queen?? She's beautiful and she's marked!! This is such a perfect example of why marking the queen is a good thing.  Whoever's hive this was had marked her last year with the color white, which indicates to us that she is going on her second year.

Waldorf School Host A Hive Gaiser Bee Co

After we spotted this beautiful caramel colored queen and transferred over all the frames into their new hive, we closed it up.  They are doing so well, we did not want to continue to disrupt them. We know she is healthy and laying good eggs and they have a flourishing population.  

Our next inspection will be soon and we will most likely add on another box so their population can continue to grow.  The Waldorf Hive looks great!


inspection day july 30, 2017

On July 30th, we did another inspection on the beautiful Waldorf School Hive, and the bees seemed to be doing fantastic. They were very calm and docile as we were handling the boxes, which is more than ideal.

This colony of honeybees is thriving and quickly growing in numbers. When we opened up the boxes, we noticed they had tons of stored and capped honey in their frames. The population is doing so well and expanding so quickly that they even started making queen cups– we noticed so many of them it was hard to count!

We couldn't seem to find the queen but we do know she is in there because there's an abundance of eggs and the bees were crafting their queen cups, which means they could potentially swarm. The queen cups are a signal to beekeepers to add a new box so there's enough room for the growing population.

This colony may have already swarmed because they seemed to be slightly lower in numbers but they are healthy and still laying eggs/hatching baby bees so now they are in the process of regrowth!


inspection day august 5, 2017

We went out to the apiary for another inspection on August 5th and decided to treat all of the hives for precautionary reasons.

We're getting to that tricky time of summer when it's much too common to find the hives being infiltrated by mites and other unwanted species. We saw these bees had fallen victim so we ended up having to treat them for Parasitic Mite Syndrome(PMS). 

Reports from the Ohio Department of Agriculture are indicating that the varroa mite population this season appears to be excessively high. Varroa mites are minuscule in size but they latch on like ticks and drain the life from the victim. We wanted to see if this was true with our hives so we did a thorough inspection on 10 of the hives in our apiary.  Of those 10 hives, 6 had obvious signs of heavy mite infestation.  Including but not limited to:

  • bees with deformed wing virus
  • poor honey storage
  • spotty brood pattern
  • larva that appears melted in their cells.

But, not to worry! Just because your hive has mites, doesn't mean it's the end of the world– or their world, really. We have started treatment (these ladies are on their second round of treatment) and will be treating every hive in the apiary every five days for the next twenty days to ensure that the brood, currently in the larvae stage, gets fully treated before they hatch so they are able to mature without being infected by the mites. We believe these ladies will pick themselves back up and become a healthy, thriving colony once again in no time! 

TREATMENTS 

Because of the high number of Varroa mites throughout the entire state of Ohio, we spent the month of August treating all hives.  We did an organic treatment of oxalic acid in 3 treatments, 5-7 days apart in order to treat all capped brood as they hatched.

We will be sure to keep you updated on our next visit out to the apiary. Be sure to follow this blog for updates and feel free to post any comments, questions or concerns.

Stay tuned!


fall extraction season: late summer - fall


Inspection Day September 9, 2017

After treating all of the hives and monitoring the bees behavior throughout the month, we opened their homes back up on September 9th to see how everyone was doing. We specifically went in to check on the status of the Varroa Mite treatment and to see where their food supply is at. 

The treatment looks like it worked tremendously and everyone seems to be happy and healthy! Therefore, we proceeded with checking the food supply and decided to add in some Easter marshmallow candies on the inner cover until we start the feeding for fall. 

Feeding during fall is necessary after extraction season so that the bees can continue building up their food supply for the winter months, before the cold gets here. 


october 3, 2017 inspection day + final extraction!

On October third, we went to the apiary to gather the frames for our final extraction of the year– the beloved fall honey!

Fall honey is dark in color, plus rich and bold in flavor. It is a bit thicker and more of a dark amber color compared to spring honey. While darker honey is more flavorful and intense than light, it also contains more nutrients; including vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

We didn't pull many frames from the newer colonies this year so the honey you will be receiving will be coming from some of the stronger, more established hives– so yours can continue to thrive. 

The final step, in the first week of November, will be to go through and consolidate some of the colonies and insulate them.

CLICK HERE to see a video of how we will be preparing the hives for winter


"American Honey" Dater Montessori

Thank you ladies of Dater Montessori for hosting a hive in the Gaiser Bee Co. apiary for the 2017 beekeeping season.  It was pleasure having you out to the farm to learn all about honeybees.  

The second hive "American Honey" was hand painted and very detailed.  Very inspirational with the lyrical quotes :) 

American Honey - Host A Hive Gaiser Bee Co. Dater Montessori

INSPECTION DAY May 14th

New honeybee colonies can start from a number of sources.  For the American Honey hive, these girls started from what is called a package of bees.  These honeybees were from a bee farm in Georgia.  We picked them up in late April and placed them into a temporary home until we had an assembled hive for them.  So on May 14th, after the hives were painted, we took this colony and placed them in their permanent home.

Here, Cory is inspecting each and every frame looking for the queen, eggs and progress before placing them in their new home.

Here, Cory is inspecting each and every frame looking for the queen, eggs and progress before placing them in their new home.

They were living in what is called a "nuc" which is a smaller hive with 5 frames.  We took them and placed them in a 8 frame hive to allow them to grow their population.  

These girls looked amazing!  When we opened up this hive we saw exactly what every beekeeper wants to see when checking on their bees progress.  We were able to spot the queen almost immediately so we caught her to be marked.  She had a beautiful laying pattern of eggs and plenty of capped brood (baby bees) so we knew moving them to a bigger home was the right move.  Their population was about to explode.

Frame of Brood Honeybee babies Host A Hive Gaiser Bee Co.

Each year that a queen is born, we will mark her with a specific color to help us know her age.  This year the universal color for queen marking is yellow.  We do this by gently catching her with a cage and placing her in a tube.  After we did this to the American Honey queen, we placed her back into her home, to which she happily retreated.

Everyone is happy and settled in!  In just a few weeks they will be ready for their next layer to continue growing their colony. After inspection, we closed up the hive and let them bee.

American Honey Host A Hive

One of these little girls wanted us to get a close up of her.

Be sure to follow this blog for updates and feel free to leave comments, questions or concerns. 


inspection day august 5, 2017

We went out to the apiary for another inspection on August 5th and decided to treat all of the hives for precautionary reasons. The "American Honey" Hive was doing so well– the population was booming! We took the top off, looked at a frame, determined it was doing exceedingly well, then closed it back up and treated it for mites.

We're getting to that tricky time of summer when it's much too common to find the hives being infiltrated by mites and other unwanted species. We saw these bees had fallen victim so we ended up having to treat them for Parasitic Mite Syndrome(PMS). 

Reports from the Ohio Department of Agriculture are indicating that the varroa mite population this season appears to be excessively high. Varroa mites are minuscule in size but they latch on like ticks and drain the life from the victim. We wanted to see if this was true with our hives so we did a thorough inspection on 10 of the hives in our apiary.  Of those 10 hives, 6 had obvious signs of heavy mite infestation.  Including but not limited to:

  • bees with deformed wing virus
  • poor honey storage
  • spotty brood pattern
  • larva that appears melted in their cells.

But, not to worry! Just because your hive has mites, doesn't mean it's the end of the world– or their world, really. We have started treatment and will be treating every hive in the apiary every five days for the next twenty days to ensure that the brood, currently in the larvae stage, is fully treated and protected from the varroa mite infestation once they hatch and start to grow/work. We believe these ladies will pick themselves back up and become a healthy, thriving colony once again in no time! 

TREATMENTS 

Because of the high number of Varroa mites throughout the entire state of Ohio, we spent the month of August treating all hives.  We did an organic treatment of oxalic acid in 3 treatments, 5-7 days apart in order to treat all capped brood as they hatched.


fall extraction season: late summer – mid fall


Inspection Day September 9, 2017

After treating all of the hives and monitoring the bees behavior throughout the month, we opened their homes back up on September 9th to see how everyone was doing. We specifically went in to check on the status of the Varroa Mite treatment and to see where their food supply is at. 

The treatment looks like it worked tremendously and everyone seems to be happy and healthy! Therefore, we proceeded with checking the food supply and decided to add in some Easter marshmallow candies on the inner cover until we start the feeding for fall. 

Feeding during fall is necessary after extraction season so that the bees can continue building up their food supply for the winter months, before the cold gets here and they're forced to bundle up indoors just like the rest of us! 


october 3, 2017 inspection day + final extraction!

On October third, we went to the apiary to gather the frames for our final extraction of the year– the beloved fall honey!

Fall honey is dark in color, plus rich and bold in flavor. It is a bit thicker and more of a dark amber color compared to spring honey. While darker honey is more flavorful and intense than light, it also contains more nutrients; including vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

We didn't pull many frames from the newer colonies this year so the honey you will be receiving will be coming from some of the stronger, more established hives– so yours can continue to thrive. 

The final step, in the first week of November, will be to go through and consolidate some of the colonies and insulate them.

CLICK HERE to see a video of how we will be preparing the hives for winter


We will be sure to keep you updated on our next visit out to the apiary. Be sure to follow this blog for updates and feel free to post any comments, questions or concerns.

Stay tuned!