April 13, 2011

MINUTES: NRVBA MEETING 13 APRIL 2011

Meeting called to order at 7:33pm.
38 members present.

Announcements:

(1) Clem von Claparede has developed a flyer to inform the public of the need to aid beekeepers in the capture and preservation of bee swarms by reporting their location to an NRVBA “hotline.” This flyer has been posted on our website. It is hoped that members will volunteer to print and carry these flyers to Fire Departments and other agencies in their home area that might be the recipients of bee swarm phone calls from the public. Members who do this should inform Clem.

(2) Next month’s meeting will revert to our normal date and time: 7:00pm on Thursday, May 12

Jerry Borger reported that both sessions of the Beginning Beekeeper Course have been completed and 50 enthusiastic new beekeepers gave good feedback regarding the course. It was moved and passed that we donate $250 to Dr. Fell’s bee research fund as a thanks for our use of his VT classroom for this course.

The pick-up date for the package bees from Dadant has been postponed one week to Tuesday, April 19. The packages should be available from noon to 5:00pm on that day. Those who will be unable to pick up their packages within those hours need to make arrangements with Jerry beforehand, otherwise a “babysitting” charge of $5 per package per day will be imposed or those packages may be assigned to persons on the waiting list.

Glen Buss introduced the evening’s program. First, Jerry Borger made a presentation of his double-screen method of hive management which can be used to (a) prevent or reduce the swarming urge in a strong colony, (b) quickly produce frames of drawn comb for use in other hives, and (c) produce several “spare” queens for use in nucs or as replacements. Jerry had printed handouts detailing this technique. The handout may soon be available on our website. Double-screen boards are available from Brushy Mountain.

Richard Reid followed Jerry with a presentation of several alternate methods of raising queens without grafting and without a double-screen board, “Queen Raising Made Easy” in essence. All these methods involved removing queen cells or complete frames containing queen cells (“swarm cells”) to a queen castle, a nuc or a spare hive body (whatever equipment you already have) and allowing the bees to raise the queen(s) themselves without removing a colony from honey production. One of the methods highlighted by Richard may be viewed at www.mdasplitter.com.

Refreshments and a raffle (including one of the coveted double-screen boards) completed the evening’s activities.

Submitted by Chris Robinson, Recording Sec’y