Bee Talk with Biology Instructor Casie Berkhouse

In this episode, I speak with Casie Berkhouse, a biology instructor and beekeeper from Northern Pennsylvania. This episode, like most others, is unedited and completely unscripted. As always, I’d love to hear your feedback! Leave me a message. I will definitely get back to you.

Plant poppies for your bees!

For the past few seasons, I’ve been planting poppies for my bees, saving the seeds and planting again. I started with ordinary “bread” poppies from the grocery store baking aisle. They start a bit slow, but then take off quickly. Poppies provide enormous amounts of pollen early in the morning. I’ve seen as many as seven bees on a single flower with pollen sacs loaded almost instantly. I don’t believe poppy flowers provide much nectar, if any. It’s interesting to see the slight changes in the colors of the flowers as pollen from other poppy growers finds its way into my little gene pool. Below, I’m linking a short video of what I do here at home to grow poppies for my bees.

Matt Feldhues, aspiring mite-bomber?

This is similar to the conversation I’ve had many times with people wanting to get into bees. To see where I’ve been the past 3 months, visit me (PA Swarm King) on YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/rodriguezbruce

If you want to be sexy af (and fabulous), grab an Official MBBP t-shirt: teespring.com/shop/mite-bomb-beekeeping-podcast-t

Three different swarm collecting techniques

Today, I employed three different techniques to collect swarms on a miserably windy, chilly, and rainy day. The first was the “Set it, and forget it”, because it was close to home. I just sat the nucleus box right up against the swarm cluster and left the bees to slowly crawl in. I’ll pick them up tomorrow night.

With the second swarm (further from home), I used a bucket, and bumped the majority of the bees into it. Then I slipped a filter bag over the bucket and snapped the ring lid on. Once all the stragglers flew into the top, I cinched the slack up over the top of the bucket and closed it with a rubber band. This is much easier on the bees, as there are no frames swinging around and shifting on the bumpy ride home. Once I got home, I dumped the bees into a hive and opened the filter bag to release the stragglers.

The third swarm was just out of reach, in a tree, so I used the “Bucket on a Pole” method. A very straight forward and popular way to get a swarm down, but the wind made it interesting.