I’m receiving many emails and calls about spring nucleus colony pick ups… Unfortunately we’re all going through this very unusual spring weather together. I just mentioned the other day that 50 degrees seems to be the new normal in working with these colonies. I’m also getting very creative in placing queen cells and virgins during the periodic rain/snow storms. Not good. Usually this cooler weather arrives the first of May, clears up and sunshine returns. But this May I’ve seen only 1 good day a week to work with the bees. Luckily they are handling these extremes well and continue to build up. However it makes additional queen rearing for additional nucleus colonies difficult.
I make mention of queen rearing because queen quality in your nucleus colony is my focus. Unlike many others who offer nucleus colonies with CA queens I refuse. I have 20 plus years of quality selection in my apiary with less than 3% annual winter losses. I know how to provide quality colonies… Each year I raise enough extra queens to overwinter to provide for all the spring nucs. This takes some of the risk in cool spring weather away knowing those queens are available. However you’ll remember my last posting in the fall about the black bear sow with 2 cubs. They hit my queen yard hard over 5 evenings. Now I’m trying to make up for those losses with difficult spring weather. No excuses, just working daily to get these colonies ready for you to set up in your apiaries and enjoy this wonderful activity.
I have begun making calls to those that are at the top of the list. Depending on where you are on my list you’ll be getting a choice of dates and times for pick up. Right now we’re starting the last week of May and going into the first and second weeks of June… Email for any questions or concerns.