Adopt-A-Hive: Quarterly Update

Quarter 4 - 2020


By Bear Country Bees

It’s hard to believe that we’re already winding down the beekeeping season. As you can imagine, this year has been unlike any other but your adopted beehive has continued to thrive nonetheless. The bees have done an excellent job of foraging this year and now…it’s time to extract the honey!

Extraction is the favorite time of year for backyard and commercial beekeepers alike. Watching the “liquid gold” (raw honey) accumulate in the bottom of an extraction system is an incredibly satisfying moment that all beekeepers live for.

As excited as we get about extraction, we have to be careful when evaluating whether or not we should extract. Sometimes, it’s better to not extract any honey so that your bees have enough food for the wintertime.

Did you know?

Honey bees pollinate nearly 130 crops in the U.S. including fruits, fibers, nuts, and vegetables. Through this pollination “service”, honey bees add over $14 billion in improved crop yields each year!

Even though we love being able to extract honey, the most important thing we can do is give your adopted bees the best chance at survival through the difficult winter months. It is much better to forego extracting and save the bees than to extract prematurely and lose the entire colony. 

Luckily, we had plenty of extra honey during the 2020 season so we did get to extract this season! Now, we want to give you an inside look at the extraction process.

There are several different methods of extraction that we’ll cover but in today’s update, we are going to show you the most budget-friendly, DIY method that any backyard beekeeper can do in their own kitchen for $10 or less.


As a special treat, we’ve also recorded a demonstration video to go along with this update!

In this video, we show you how we extracted honey from one of your supers (smaller boxes on a beehive) so that it’s ready to be cleaned up and packaged. We hope you’ll enjoy watching :) 

For the remainder of the year, our focus is going to be getting your adopted hive ready for wintertime!

Note: The honey you received as part of your adoption package is extracted directly from these Utah beehives.

"

Here, then, is the short answer to every beekeeping issue. Give [the bees] the resources to resolve the problem and let them.

- Michael Bush, The Practical Beekeeper

Other Things You Can Do To Help The Bees

  • Plant a bee-friendly garden. Sowing bee-friendly seeds in a garden or even a planter box can be an easy and inexpensive way to provide bees with a safe haven. Try out a mixture such as this one: Wild Flower Mix - Honey Bee Mixture.
  • Report honey bee swarms to a local beekeeper. Most people tend to panic when they see honey bees but swarming is the time when honey bees are the most docile. Instead of spraying the bees or calling an exterminator, please contact a local beekeeper to help relocate the colony to a safer place.
  • Share your Adopt-A-Hive experience. One of the best ways you can help more honey bees is spread the word about our Adopt-A-Hive program. The more adoptions we have, the better we can care for the needs of the bees and the more honey bee research we can perform!
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