April Meeting Minutes 2017

General Meeting of the Willamette Valley Beekeeping Association

April 24, 2017

Chemeketa Community College

The April meeting was called to order by President Richard Ferrier at 7:06 PM.

Announcements:  Richard announced the following volunteer opportunities for WVBA

April 29 and 30  “Ag Fest”  Salem Fairgrounds

At the March meeting WVBA set up a small committee to oversee the volunteers and the booth.  The shift will include 4 people per shift with at least a couple of shifts per day.  Please contact Rich or Bunny for more information.

Richard also announced that Foothills Honey (Hansen’s) is behind schedule this year for their nuc pick-up date.  They are one to two weeks behind and will keep us posted on the delivery date.  Rich will call or email everyone with the pick-up date.  Rich will pick them up and those who have purchased nucs can claim them by Bldg. 8 parking lot at Chemeketa CC.  As of now, 90 nucs have been purchased for $105.00 each and will be delivered in a cardboard nuc box.  The club has purchased 10 hives and if they do not sell, Rich will take care of them and have them for sale.

Bee Field Day was a success.  Steve Coffman had 20 hives to work on.  With the season being so late, he was barely getting started on his splits.

WVBA  passed the hat for donations for our speaker fees in February and collected $267.00 in donations.  The cost of Ross Conrad’s speaker fees were $600.  The WVBA has $333.00 out of pocket expenses to make up the difference.

Richard noted the May 22 meeting will be held in Bldg. 3 Room 116.

Richard had a few announcements

*There was an article he read that discussed wax “worms” and the fact that it has been discovered they eat plastics.

*100 Plants to Feed the Bees is a book published by the Xerci Society that includes native wildflowers, native and non-native pasture grasses for the whole U.S.  An inexpensive book that has a lot of information regarding honey bees, bumblebees, hummingbirds, and moths.

*Hazelnuts are a great source of pollen in Jan-Feb in our area and is the first pollen bees can collect if they are able to fly.  One downside is that they are sprayed heavily, but on the upside, our area has many acres planted to hazelnuts and that area is increasing every year.

*Beware, yellowjackets are out.

Rich discussed putting supers on your hives, starting with using, or not using queen excluders.  If your hive is thriving, add a super.  Queen excluders are a personal choice.  Bees are reluctant to go through the excluder if the comb is not drawn out.  It helps to put a hole in the super.  Super frames can be used again and again.  The disadvantage of not using an excluder, you could end up with some pollen in your honey.

Rich also described how to make a split.  If you have 2 deep boxes with brood in both boxes, take an extra deep and add 4 to 5 frames.  Take a frame or two with brood and shake off all the bees and put frames in extra deep box.  Put a queen excluder on top of the two deeps and put the “new” deep on top of the excluder.  The nurse bees will go through the excluder right back to nurse the brood.  Once you are sure there are no eggs in this deep, you can make your new hive by adding a queen in her cage, letting the bees do the rest, checking in about a week to make sure they have excepted the queen.

Rich spent the next half hour discussing swarms and his notes were put on the WVBA website.

At the end of the meeting, several folks came forward, saying they would purchase a few more nucs fromFoothills Honey to make it to the 100 needed for a further discount in the price.

Respectfully submitted,

Shelley Gowell, Secretary