Vaccinating honey bees

Many WVBA members probably saw the news about the development of a honey bee vaccine to protect colonies from American foulbrood. The most recent good news was that the USDA has issued a conditional license for two years for vaccine use. The vaccine, PrimeBEE, should be available for purchase in 2023. And additional good news […]

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WVBA 2023 Bee School

WILLAMETTE VALLEY BEEKEEPERS ASSOCIATION 2023 Bee School What: The WVBA is offering an introduction to beekeeping course in February 2023. We will cover equipment needed, where to obtain bees, how to “work” bees, pests and diseases, and much more. When: Monday evenings February 6, 13, 20, and 27 from 7:00 – 9:00 pm. Plus in

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Finishing the Season

Well winter finally caught up to us after milder than normal summer and fall months. Our bees were winding down but it became serious business for them after mid-October now into November rain and colder nighttime temperatures. We should now shut down for any further manipulations with a couple of exceptions. We can still arrange

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September in Apiary

August was definitely NOT  a month for much hive examining. Temperatures were hot and hives full of bees (and maybe supers had some honey).  September is a critical juncture in our annual mite fight – take samples NOW. A nice resource is the August BetterBEE Buzz (a bee supply newsletter) “Winter Bees and Varroa Mites”.

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We typically think of honey bee foraging as gathering pollen and nectar from flowers. However, they also forge for propolis and water. As the bee nutrition studies at OSU by Ramesh Sagili and postdoc Priya Charkrabarti demonstrate, the nutritional requirements of honey bees are quite complex. It turns out that maybe nectar and pollen doesn’t



Spring is the busiest time of the year for the beekeeper. Bee populations develop rapidly and changes happen very quickly in the beehive.  It is a challenge for the beekeeper to stay ahead — to anticipate, not merely re-act.  We often have to make decisions based on relatively little information. It is probably  the toughest


Save the Bees

Dr Marla Spivek in October American Bee Journal discussed  some examples of “double-edged swords” beekeepers are facing. One was the conundrum of individuals starting beekeeping to save the bees  but then they don’t properly  care for their bees. New beekeepers don’t initially know how to care for their bees but also some individuals who start

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Thinking of Birthdays

The more I study beekeeping, the less I know, until, finally, I arrived – I know pretty much nothing. But, even though I know nothing, I still have plenty to unlearn. [Apologies to Charles Martin Simon] Okay, as one or two of my beekeeping friends might remember (and facebook  reminded you), I share a December

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