News from Bolivia

Many of you are aware that I winter 3 months in Bolivia, South America where my wife Nieves hails from. While here I do some bee classes and apiary visits. We have class beginning this Saturday in fact (it is summer her). I just finished an intense week of coarse and field work. Kerry Clark … Read more about News from Bolivia

Ready for winter?

How do you overwinter? What do you consider the greatest challenge to successful overwintering? 38 WVBA survey respondents reported average  overwintering losses of 46%, just two percentage points different from the 416 OR beekeeper average winter loss. As Figure 3 of the WVBA report illustrates … Read more about Ready for winter?

Bee loss update

The first posting on WVBA winter losses reported loss of 122 colonies = 46 % average loss, slightly lower than the statewide loss of 48%, which equals the highest for OR backyarders. The 46%loss was the highest WVBA level of the previous 4 years and 9.5% above the 4 year average.  The trend is … Read more about Bee loss update

Our Reluctant Spring

I hope your bees are OK despite our cool, wet spring weather. If you overwintered colonies from last year, PLEASE don’t forget to send in a survey to to report winter losses/survivorship and your managements for the past season. Survey is open until end of April. March … Read more about Our Reluctant Spring


As beekeepers we employ a variety of tools. Smoker, Hive tool, frame holders, etc etc. When I prepared the Honey Bee Health Coalition  guide on managing varroa we called the guide a tool – an educational aid to combat our most serious bee pest.   Just a few decades ago, tool use was among … Read more about TOOL USE

Honey Bee Health Coalition releases new guide, tool to help beekeepers make informed hive management decisions

The Honey Bee Health Coalition has developed two new resources for beekeepers  — a best practices guide for hive health and a decision support tool for taking on the honey bees most dangerous parasite. An expert team of beekeepers, entomologists, extension and regulatory agents, bee suppliers and … Read more about Honey Bee Health Coalition releases new guide, tool to help beekeepers make informed hive management decisions

Bees and Solar energy arrays

The National news picked up the potential conflict in Oregon between solar energy use of Agriculturally-zoned lands and beekeeping. A 73-acre solar project near Estacada in Clackamas County requested an exemption to build on agricultural land. To qualify, the solar project developer included … Read more about Bees and Solar energy arrays

Fall Yard Chores

Do you take time to rake up the yard, deadhead the perennials and till the vegetable garden in the fall? Or do you leave things more natural? Leaving a “natural, “messy” yard may not win any good-neighbor awards, but it might help beneficials and insect pollinator populations.  Consider letting … Read more about Fall Yard Chores