September Minutes 2017

The Northern Neck Beekeepers Club met on September 11, 2017 at Stephen’s Church in Heathsville, VA. President John Elkin called the meeting to order at 7pm.

The August minutes were approved. The treasurer report was approved.


Education Report:

*Stratford Hall Wine and Oyster Fest on September 16-17. Chuck Cox is running the


* Boots and Barbeque is September 24th. Dave Holt and Hyte Smith will be running


Upcoming Beekeepers events that will be very informative and are recommended:

*Beekeepers Guild of The Eastern Shore - October 7 at Nassawadox

Mel Dissenkoen is the presenter


*VSBA Fall Meeting in Weyers Cave in Nov:


*EAS Conference - August 13-17, 2018

Hampton roads Convention Center

Over ten speakers and short courses


Goals for upcoming class in January:

*We need mentors for the next Beginners Bee Class this winter. We would like to

have mentors in place early in the class so no one will order bees from an outside

source as happened last year.

* Membership list is behind the times. We will begin work on updating soon.


Mike’s Notes:

*It’s time to do a mite count. Soon it will be too late to treat the bees for mites.

*Bees that will emerge in the next month or so are the ones that will be the brood in January/February.

*If you have a strong hive at this time but have the virus the bees will become very weak in the winter. The field bees will go out and will become to weak to come back. You will lose a ton of bees because of the virus. The mites will be gone but the virus will be still there.

*First of October start doing sugar water 2 to 1. Boil the water and add the sugar to clarify it. There is no need to add pollen now as the goldenrod and aster is blooming.

*”Feed When There is a Need”: after five to six frames are full then stop feeding.

The working bees will push the queen bee down to the bottom boxes. They will fill the top box with honey.

*Small Hives beetles are still out there. Look for them. If you see beetles running when you open the lid look in the corners of your top frames. If you see rings the bees have taken populous to make a fence around the beetles. A strong hive will be able to do this.

* It is time to consolidate hives. Bring hives down to 2-3 boxes as needed. The small hive beetles will lay eggs in empty frames. The beetles particularly like the black plastic frames - they can get into the corners of the frames.

*Keep your robbing screen on. Do your inspection in the early afternoon while the field bees are out.

* Lots of hornets are being seen now and they are getting the bees. They are more of a pest than a threat as they do not hurt hive numbers too badly.

*The weather is getting colder in the evening. Need to put mouse guards on and get ready for temperature changes. Put a wind break (straw bales are a good choice) up on the north side of your hives.


General Discussion:

*West Virginia has an agreement with the state to not mow certain medians. It has saved the state money is beginning to catch on. VDOT is already doing this in places in the Northern Neck. It was suggested that the club take the initiative to push this to a greater extent in the Northern Neck. It was further suggested that a sign be designed to designate areas as a bee pollinator area. John Elkin will look into this.


The next meeting will be held on October, 9th, 2017

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