November Newsletter 2018

President’s Message

As I write this on Nov 1 it is beautiful outdoors. The bucks are running around as if they are looking for something? The bees are actually flying! And, I am still feeding my bees. It may be late but better late than not enough. If you are ever in doubt, then let the bees guide you. They stop feeding when they have enough or when it is too cold consistently. By the way, everybody has their own take on things. I never use a thin syrup. Especially in Fall, if feeding bees, they do need the sugar, but they don't need to be dehydrating the water out of nectar. I use corn syrup now but if I were to use sugar then my recipe is: heat (not boil) 2.5-gals water then add 25 lbs of sugar, stir, and let sit. Wait until the syrup has cooled before pouring into a 5-gal bucket. I would add any additive at this time (not when hot).


All mouseguards are on and all treatments are complete. If you want to vent your hive, then use a twig or something natural on the inner cover at the front of the hive. I do not vent my hives anymore unless I have a strong Italian gene hive. It is obvious. There will be moisture in cool weather and too many bees eating their stores in nice weather like this. Be careful with what I say. All my hives have screen bottom boards - even the 40 or so I have in Vermont. Bees need air, but they do not need a wind tunnel racing through the hive during the winter. Venting may be called for if your bottom is wood and you choose a very limiting mouseguard. Too much or too little of anything is to be avoided. Is anybody confused yet? That's why we have meetings! See you all there!


Newbees often think about wrapping their hives for winter. I admit that I will wrap winter nucs (5 frames on top of 5 frames) after I have huddled about 4 or so together. I use a foam board. I have a dozen started since late July with Carniolan queens. I just get aggravated at those Italian bees during the dearth, so I make splits. Winter is a good time to research about bee genetics. Most of your bees are hybrids just like us.


-Michael J Frey


Looking Forward

Grant Stiles will be presenting his talk on: “Things I’ve learned in 40 years of beekeeping”. This is a wonderful opportunity for ECBS members to ask any and all questions. Grant is also offering to bring any Mann Lake orders for member (free delivery)!  Please email Grant at before 11/09. There will also be a $10 special on medium gloves.


We will be accepting donations to support the Honey Queen Program (for travel expenses, lodging, etc.) or if you prefer, you can write your own check payable to NJBA. The checks must be sent to Charles Ilsley, NJBA Treasurer.


Don’t forget the NJBA Fall Meeting is on 11/10 at the College of New Jersey. We look forward to seeing you there and hearing from the very knowledgeable Dr. Debbie Delaney, who is the featured speaker. Dr. Delaney is an Associate Professor of Entomology at the University of Delaware and is not only a respected scientist but also a very entertaining speaker.  She recently took on the role of Academic Advisor to the EAS Master Beekeeper program, expanding her participation at the annual EAS conference, where she has been a featured speaker for many years.


The registration for the ECBS short course is now digital! If you, or a newbee, are looking to sign up, you may use the link We hope to see many new faces during the course!


-Lisa Skoglund


Important Message from Veto-Pharma (Makers of Apivar)

“Please, don’t leave the Apivar strips inside colonies over the winter. You can carefully remove them after 8 weeks of treatment. The reason we do not recommend prolonging the treatment duration is because continuous exposure of the mites to amitraz may contribute to a faster development of resistances. To keep the probability of resistance development as low as possible, we ask beekeepers to respect the label with regard to dosage and treatment duration.