Aug 2011 meeting minutes

Minutes of PBC Beekeepers Association Meeting for August, 2011

Date:  August 5, 2011

Called to order 7:04 PM

 53 Members    23   visitors

July minutes accepted.

Guest Speaker, Jaime Ellis, PhD from University of Florida

Highlighted information:

There is an on-line beekeeping course through the University of Florida.  Next registration will be in January.  You do not need to take it for credit.  There are 24 narrated presentations, tests and a requirement of either a field day or a day with a local beekeeper.

Females are diploids, fertilized.  Males are haploids (half) not fertilized

Queen lays eggs in center and spirals outward.  Pollen and honey can be found above the laying area.

There are drone zones where somehow both virgin queens and drones now to congregate.

21 day from egg to worker

24 day from egg to drone

16 day from egg to queen.  All eggs hatch in three days.

Honeybees practice temporal polytheism, doing different jobs in time as needed

 which include:

Cleaners, nurse bees, receivers from foragers, pollen storage, cleaners, wax producers,

Ventilating bees  19 days old(for circulation), guard bees, undertaker bees, foragers (21 days old, collect pollen nectar, polpolis and water).

The royal jelly fed to a queen is not exactly the same as what’s fed to workers and drones.

The wax comb is used for communication, as they do the waggle dance.    The waggle dance is a figure eight used for sources more than a football field.  The bee vibrates her body.  Bees use the ocelli on the top of their heads to take in the sun and recalculate as needed for directions to others.  Dr. Ellis described the angles bees use to give the exact location.  A round dance (circular) is the least precise and used for food sources close to the nest, approximately 15 meters.   The straight run in the waggle dance is the important feature giving directions in degrees according to the sun. Bees will give a sample of their find to their encourage their sisters.

The wax serves as the kidneys and liver to bees and absorbs “junk”.

Although most beekeepers detest wax moths, they are the vacuum cleaners or buzzards of the insect world for sanitation.

Bees begin orientation flights 18 days of age and use landmarks to find locations.  Bees don’t see the color red.

Each hive has a distinct odor produced from the different pollen and nectar taken in.

Most bees will die outside of the hive.  The undertaker bees will fly off with any dead from the 

hive and deposit the bodies a distance away so as not to attract ants and other insects.

When bees swarm, they leave with 30-70% of the workers.  This can take anywhere from 2 hours to 3 days.  The queen is put on a diet by the workers and loses ½ of her weight prior to swarming.  They also chase her around for exercise.  (Diet and exercise, the same as humans), so she is fit for the swarm.

Bees like to swarm before the nectar flow, usually April, May and June.

Swarms are triggered by 1 congestion, 2 presence of drones, 3 seasonal nectar availability.

Younger queens are less likely to swarm.

Once a queen cell is capped, they’ve made up their minds and there is no turning back.

Dr. Ellis cuts the queen cells out of his own hives to discourage swarming.

Queen cells around the perimeter are usually swarm cells.  Supersedure (replacing a poor laying queen) are usually around the brood pattern.

Good queen eggs are less than 12 hours old.

The honeybees is the only insect to use its body to thermo-regulate the nest.  They will actually put their head  into  the cell to keep warm.

Africanized bees- They request 50 samples for FABIS, but actually only need a few (difficult to obtain) in perfect shape.

All wasps are carnivores.  Yellowjacks and white faced hornets tend to prey on bees in spring and fall when other insects are not available.

Resources Offered:    then click on extension.  There are 5 videos you can download for free.

Recommended books:  The Buzz About Bees, Jurgen Tautz

                                           Honeybee Democracy, Tom Seeley

                                           Honeybee Ecology, Tom Seeley

Following Dr. Ellis a short meeting resumed.

Treasurer’s Report:  Balance $10,336.83

Basic Training:  The next “hands on” training will be held at Pine Jog Encironmental center on August 13

From 9:30-11:30.  A sign-up available at the meeting for the first 12 signed up.

Outreach:  Alternative Pet Show, August 27 from 10-4 at the National Guard Armory on Gun Club Road across from the jail.  Members encouraged to volunteer.  Information will be posted on Yahoo Groups.

Logo:  Has been circulating in e-mail.

Speakers:  September Dr. Mark Stein, Bee Venom

                   October Dr. Bill Kern,  Africanized Bees

Survey to Members:  Next month a survey will be given to members for feedback for information of how the association could better help them in beekeeping.

Meeting Adjourned 9:15PM

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