Tuesday, April 23rd Bee Package Recommendations

  1. We are recommending that everyone install their packages at the first opportunity when the temperature is up in the 50’s.  We understand that some people wish to wait until the weekend to install – which we are recommending against.  The forecast is that Thursday will be a good day to install.
  2. Please do not spray the bees when installing them – the nights are still too cold, and the moisture will do more harm than good.
  3. Beth Conrey will have the spare queens.  If you find that your queen is DOA, retain it and call Beth at 970-213-3099 as soon as possible.  We need to know on Friday if you need a replacement queen – we will start selling them on Saturday, so the availability of replacement queens after Friday is questionable.

Monday April 22nd Bee Package Order Update – The bee packages are available for pickup on Tuesday, April 23rd, from 8:00 AM to 7:00 PMWe could really use a few extra hands to help for a couple of hours with the distribution throughout the day – especially early when distribution begins, and late – what we suspect may well be the busiest time, from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm.  We hope all packages will be picked up on Tuesday, but if you can’t make that pickup window, please contact Greg (number below) to make arrangements.

The pickup location is Greg Bowdish’s home in Severance.  From I-25 take the Harmony Exit AKA CR 74, East into Severance about 6 miles.  At the gas station in town turn left into Settlers Landing subdivision on Immigrant Trail. His home, 404 Immigrant Trail, is the third house on the right.  Click here for a map.  

The weather is not looking to be promising for bee work Tuesday and Wednesday, so you should be prepared to hold your packages for a couple of days if necessary.  The forecast is for a warming trend Thursday through the weekend. A dark, cool, not cold, location like a basement generally works well.  The syrup in the can should last for several days.  Beyond that, you can also spray a light mist of sugar water on the outside screen to provide additional nourishment. “Light” and “screen” are the key words.  If you wet the girls in this cold weather, they will die, and it is not always easy to see the difference between “misting” the bees and wetting them.

This might well be a year to use a gentler installation technique.  When hanging the queen cage between frames of the starter super, be sure the screen faces the space between the frames so attendant bees have ready access.  If you have an extra empty medium or large super, you can place the bee package box full of bees (inverted or on its side) and the inverted sugar water can (if it isn’t empty) on top of the frames inside the empty super. Spill a few bees over the queen, and the bees will find their way down to the queen.  Place your feeder on top – you will need to feed.  Come back the next day or after a few days and remove the extra super, bee box and can.  If you plan to manually release your queen after 2-3 days instead of using a marshmallow plug, this would be a good time to remove the bee box.

A reminder: DO NOT BOIL SUGAR WATER – THE HEAT CARAMELIZES THE SUGAR AND WILL KILL YOUR BEES.  Temperatures of about 150 degrees kill the yeasts that can shorten the life of sugar water.  If you are concerned about that, you can heat your sugar solution to 160-170 degrees.

A few of you will find that your queen is DOA in her cage – this happens, and we have extra queens for this contingency.  Call Greg at 970-590-6059 ASAP when you see this for a replacement.

Sunday April 21st Bee Package Order Update – We have confirmation that the bees are shipping.  Barring something unforeseen, bee packages will be available for pickup on Tuesday, April 23rd, from 8:00 AM to 7:00 PM.  We hope all packages will be picked up on Tuesday, but if you can’t make that pickup window, please contact Greg at 970-590-6059 to make arrangements.

We will post updated information here when the packages are confirmed ready for pickup at Greg’s, (directions and map below), or if the bees are delayed in transit.The pickup location is Greg Bowdish’s home in Severance.  From I-25 take the Harmony Exit AKA CR 74, East into Severance about 6 miles.  At the gas station in town turn left into Settlers Landing subdivision on Immigrant Trail. His home, 404 Immigrant Trail, is the third house on the right.  Click here for a map.  

The weather is not looking to be promising for bee work early in the week, so you should be prepared to hold your packages for a couple of days if necessary.  A cool, not cold, location like a basement generally works well.  The syrup in the can should last for several days.  Beyond that, you can also spray a light mist of sugar water on the outside screen to provide additional nourishment. “Light” and “screen” are the key words.  If you wet the girls, they will die.  A reminder: DO NOT BOIL SUGAR WATER – THE HEAT CARAMELIZES THE SUGAR AND WILL KILL YOUR BEES.  Temperatures of about 150 degrees kill the yeasts that can shorten the life of sugar water.  If you are concerned about that, you can heat your sugar solution to 160-170 degrees.

Friday April 19th Bee Package Order Update – The bee packages will be in transit on Monday, April 22nd, and be available for pickup on Tuesday, April 23rd, perhaps as early as 7 AM.  We will post updated information here when the packages are confirmed ready for pickup at Greg’s, (directions and map below), or if the bees are delayed in transit.

The weather is not looking to be promising for bee work early in the week, so you should be prepared to hold your packages for a couple of days if necessary.  A cool, not cold, location like a basement generally works well.  The syrup in the can should last for several days.  You can also spray a light mist of sugar water on the outside screen to provide additional nourishment. “Light” and “screen” are the key words.  If you wet the girls, they will die.

April 18th Bee Package Order Update – As currently planned Bee packages will leave California this weekend sometime between Saturday morning and Sunday evening.  The trip should take about 18 hours, meaning we’ll meet the truck sometime between midnight Saturday night and noon on Monday.  Allow us 6 hours to pick up the bees and stage them.  Then pick up will be available.

Our order this year totals about 450 packages of bees, and we could really use 2-3 more people to help with the pickup of the bees.  This involves meeting the Olivarez truck, helping offload our empty bee boxes and load our bee packages into the trailer for the trip to Severance. Being in the midst of this many bees – and their intoxicating scent – is a truly unique experience, and one that you’ll value for a long time.  If you can spare the time, we could use the help.  Call Ken Nichols at 970-988-4416.  Extra hands will also be welcome in Severance to help with distribution.

Everyone should plan on feeding their bees as weather is not forecast to be the best next week.  More on this later.

The pickup location is Greg Bowdish’s home in Severance.  From I25 take the Harmony Exit AKA CR 74, East into Severance about 6 miles.  At the gas station in town turn left into Settlers Landing subdivision on Immigrant Trail. His home, 404 Immigrant Trail, is the third house on the right.  Click here for a map.   You can also drop off empty bee boxes here any time before the bees ship – leave them to the left of the building in back.

Prior Info:

Per our supplier, the current estimated delivery date is Monday, April 22nd.  This is subject to change.  The Bee Package Order delivery date is always somewhat uncertain, because weather and queen rearing can impact order preparation.  We are planning to distribute bees from Greg Bowdish’s location in Severance.

If you ordered bees and did not receive the NCBA Bee Order Status Update email sent on Saturday April 6th, email NCBA Secretary John Green at ncbasecretary@nocobees.org to make sure you are on the order status email list.

We have been assured by our supplier that we will receive full three pound packages with a queen, in spite of the difficulties you may have heard some suppliers are having.  Olivarez Honey Bees (http://www.ohbees.com) is one of the largest producers of package bees in northern California, and has been a reliable supplier for us.

Contacts

970-658-4949
Northern Colorado
webmaster@nocobees.org

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