In 2014, there were an estimated 2.7 million honeybee colonies in the United States, a number that is tracked by the USDA. And while it's true that backyard beekeeping can help your garden flourish and provide you with an abundance of sweet raw organic honey, it's important to maintain optimal bee health. The summertime season is generally pretty simple for beekeepers, but understanding which maintenance tasks are essential can help you keep a healthy, happy hive all summer long. Here are just a few summer maintenance tips for beekeepers.
Inspect the Queen
It's important to mention that your hives are largely self-sustaining during the summer season. That being said, you should still inspect the queen every few weeks to make sure she's laying eggs regularly. If your queen doesn't lay enough eggs, your hive may not have enough drones and workers to sustain itself the following season. Make sure to inspect carefully; don't invade the queen's space and don't linger too much.
Check For Mites
Varroa mites are one of the most common beehive pests that can hinder bee health and potentially transmit dangerous viruses. That's why it's important to check for these type of mites frequently throughout the summer months. These mites are a red-brown shade and can even reproduce on pupae and larvae in the developing brood. Varroa mite infestations aren't always easy to spot, so focus on bee activity and look for these suspicious signs.
"Colony symptoms, commonly called parasitic mite syndrome, include an abnormal brood pattern, sunken and chewed cappings and larvae slumped in the bottom or side of the cell. This ultimately causes a reduction in the honey bee population, supersedure of queen bees and eventual colony breakdown and death," writes BeeAware.
Ensure Adequate Water Sources
Finally, it's important to make sure that your bees are thoroughly hydrated with all the potential heat that comes with the summer season. To do this, check to make sure there are adequate water sources in close proximity to your hives.
Ultimately, taking good care of your bees is the best way to make the most of your beekeeping endeavors, maintain a healthy hive, and harvest raw honey, pollen for organic bee pollen capsules, and more. For more information about organic bee pollen capsules, contact GloryBee.