12. How The Beehive Property Management In Different Seasons Of All The Year Round?

12. How The Beehive Property Management In Different Seasons Of All The Year Round?

Beehive Property Management: When the bee colonies are in flower garden or field Beehive Management is easy and inexpensive. But there are some seasons of flower crisis when you have to expense some extra money and efforts to maintain your bees, because you have to provide honey and pollen supplements or alternatives. Honey alternative is a mixture of one part sugar with one part water. Pollen supplement is the mixture of crushed sugar and pigeon pea. It’s used for medications and to prevent bee diseases. You can make it by yourself or buy it from any reputed bee nutrition supplier.

Beehive Property Management While flower crisis in the nature
If there is flower crisis in most of the time where you keep your bees, it will be more expensive for you and it’s not an ideal place for bee farming. Remember, honey bee management in the period of flower crisis is just to prepare them for harvesting season and due to lake of natural food, obviously growth of bees will be reduced significantly.

How The Beehive Property Management In Different Seasons Of All The Year Round?
Beehive Property Management
Learn more about pollen supplement.

Usually honey harvesting season is while sufficient flowers in nature. It could be from early stage to middle stage of some crop like corn flower, apple, mustard oil, litchi etc. Remember, all crop are not suitable to harvest honey. Some crop are just to feed the bees only, not have enough honey to harvest. Paddy, mango are like this crop.

To learn more about Top Bar Hive management, find here a book: Top-Bar Beekeeping: Organic Practices for Honeybee Health.

Top Bar Hive Management

Usually, Top Bar Hive or Super is used in harvesting season. The main objective is to keep separate honey combs from the brood and restrict Queen bee not to come in this chamber. If queen comes here and lays eggs, the frames or bar will be populated with eggs, larvae, pupa which is not possible to remove from the frame for harvesting honey. So these will get damage. A separator/ net trap is used between brood and super/top bar hive to restrict queen bee.

Super box/Top bar hive

Remember, for 10 frame brood box, you need similar size of super box that is 10 frames super box.

How The Beehive Property Management In Different Seasons Of All The Year Round?
Brood box, Super & Complete beehive

Super or Top Bar Hive is installed above the Brood or on the top of the Brood. That is why it’s called Top Bar Hive and usually smaller in height. A Top bar hive or super and brood is shown below:

You can buy here Assembled 10-Frame Super Kit, Painted Wood-Frames, 6-5/8-Inch by Mann Lake, Model HK210.

The picture beside shows a Complete box After installation of brood box, super and top cover.

Now the box is ready to install bees and harvest honey. brood box will be populated with sufficient bees and a strong queen. A separator is used to keep the queen separate from super box. So, that it can’t go super box and lays eggs there.

Beehive Property Management
Different types of flowers are available in forest in all seasons
Mustard oil, corn flower, litchi are flowers of harvesting honey. The time period of harvesting may vary based on the flowers available near to your beehives and you’re living in which region.

But if you live near to some forest area or you can shift your bees to forest, you’ll get some honey in all season as in forest some flowers are available in all seasons.

Taste and flavor of forest honey is mixed type as the different types of flowers bloom in the same time. If you like to get the taste and flavor of specific type, you have to produce honey from seasonal crop like litchi, corn flower, mustard oil etc.

But if you can keep your bees in the forest with same types of flowers or trees, you can get a specific type of honey with single taste and flavor. From my experience I found that many bees are unable to come back in hives. So, you will loose many bees in the forest.

Proper Management

The bee farm must be managed properly so as to produce surplus honey that can be harvested. Usually bee farmers medicate their bees from January to February when the queen resumes laying eggs. After making sure the hive is enough populated with bees and is producing sufficient honey, the bee farmers try to re-queens the colony around early spring or in the fall. The bee farmers kill and discard the old queen every year as the queen become old and capacity of laying eggs go down.

You can buy here: New Bee Hive Smoker, Stainless Steel with Heat Shield, Beekeeping Equipment from VIVO.

How The Beehive Property Management In Different Seasons Of All The Year Round?
Beehive Smoker
Safe Management

To safely maintain bee colony beekeeper should have proper tools to handle the boxes and bees. Tools are scraper, smoker, frame (comb) puller, net helmet or dress, honey harvesting machine, net trap.

Always open the cover from the back, use smoke before opening the hive, front side of colony should be free from any disturbance. Never open the box at hot or while the sun is on top of the head. Always try to safely handle the bees to avoid stings.

Beehive Property Management at Harvesting Season
Maximum period of the year is off season and harvesting period is few months only in most of the countries. But if you are in any region where flowers are available abundantly, harvesting period can be more. Specifically if you are in or near to any forest area you can harvest honey more or less all the year round. So, honeybee property management become easier and cheap for you. However, to properly maintain the bees you have to take care about the following things:

01. Hive Installation

Install the hive in flower garden or field at least 15 days before the flower blooming. Because they will take some time to acquaintance with the flower garden or field.

02. Use of Tool

Take all the tools and materials required to maintain the bees, such as: Knife, smoker, tobacco leaves, net helmet or dress, frame puller, honey extractor, honey sieve, bucket, drum etc. No need to install any feeder as you need not to feed them separately like off season.

03. Re-arrange frames

Re-arrange the frames of bees as per the hive condition and population of bees. All the hives you keep in one or more rows depending on the flower location. Try to keep the bees most nearly to the flowers. Because, if the distance of flowers are more they will take more time to reach in the hive every time. That means if you keep in a distance of double, ultimately you will get half of expected honey. Thus distance of hive will seriously affect the quantity of honey collection.

04. Check Beehives regularly

How The Beehive Property Management In Different Seasons Of All The Year Round?
Check Beehives regularly
Everyday check the hive and note in the register which hives are extracted mentioning the date and time. Don’t keep the honey in the hive when it is ripped enough. Because if the hive is full of honey, they will reduce their work and tend to stop collecting honey.

So, if you extract honey they will found lake of honey in the hive and work more to full fill the hive and ultimately you will get more honey.

05. Matured harvesting

Don’t harvest or extract the honey until become matured. If you do so, the quality of honey will be inferior and more moisture will be there. Usually in our country ideal bee keepers extract their honey 10/12 day’s interval. But some of bee keepers only take 3/4 days for harvesting and definitely they get more honey of inferior quality.

06. Avoid walking ways

Always keep the hives in rear side of walking way, never disturb them to their passage of flying and it is risky also as they can sting you.

07. Wear Bee Suit & helmet

You can buy here: NATURAL APIARY BEEKEEPING SUIT – Different colors – LARGE – Complete, Full, All-in-One – Fencing Veil – Easy to Wear & Remove.

Always wear net dress or helmet before go to the hive and use smoker with tobacco to make them cool, otherwise they may sting you. You are suggested to buy all in one to save money. Because if you buy each component separately then the total cost will be more than all in one.

08. Aged beehives

For getting more honey aged hive is better than the brand new. Because a new hive of adequate young worker bees, unable to collect more honey. You should keep more attention about your weak hive in respect of bee population.

09. Don’t be greedy

Don’t be greedy more to extract from any pupa frame/comb for honey as they will get damaged and you will lose your worker bees. Nicely clean and remove all the bees from comb before keep in the machine for extraction.

How The Beehive Property Management In Different Seasons Of All The Year Round?
Wear Bee Suit & helmet
10. Keep large quantity of honey stock

When flowers are going to be reduced, please don’t extract more and keep a large quantity of honey stock in the hive to save your bees. While flowers reduced more, put a feeder pot in every hive to get ready to feed them artificially.

Tips and Warning

Every bee is your asset and work for you to collect honey. So, never kill a bee unnecessarily. Always keep some medicines so as you may apply while a bee stings you. If you experience any bad symptom, go to a doctor and take necessary action. Remember, in absence of close attention you may lead a large quantity of bees to die at any time, especially at the time of flower reduction. If you found any critical condition of hive please consult an expert of apiary.

Sources of Information:

Help the Honey Bees: Haagen-Dazs
Photo Credit – Google Images – Unrestricted
Beekeeping news and journals.
Experience of own project
Bee Journal

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