What a great club meeting we had on Saturday! Lot’s of enthusiasm and lots of good work accomplished, and many new members signing up! Here is the news, for those of you who couldn’t make it:
We Have a Web Site!
First, we indeed have the Preservation Beekeeping website up and running. We have a chat group there for members, a signup page with a subscribe button where you can become a member with your PayPal account or a charge card. We also have a Preservation Beekeeping FaceBook page.
We added articles, links, blog entries, with much much more to come.
I’ve decided that information for our group will be available through three sources: Our FaceBook page, our website, and our Meetup group (no, this is NOT a dating website!). I will no longer be posting to our local bee list. I mean, a woman can only man (?) so many lists!
So, I beseech you, please signup with Meetup, FaceBook, or our Preservation Beekeeping website and our chat group (The Hive) to keep current on what we’re up to. Or sign up for all three!
A New Prototype Bee Hive
Next, on our meeting Agenda, Barry unveiled his prototype Preservation Beehive! We were all so excited to see what he had invented. There is nothing like this out there. Barry has made a hive design that is small compact, simple, light, supremely well-insulated, and bee friendly. It can even be hung in a tree! This is not a hive for honey collection for simple preservation. You can put it up and forget about it. Let the bees care for themselves!
The hive is small on purpose: Bees do best in compact space, and swarm a lot which is—in this Club—a good thing! So, keep these hives for swarms, for good genetics, and hands-off beekeeping!
Barry, send me some photos so that I can post them! (firstname.lastname@example.org)
He is finishing up the fine points of the design, and we hope he’ll start making them very soon because we all want to order some for spring!
Lastly, our club made great swarm plans for spring. Member Jody Hymes will be taking and dispensing swarm calls. Thea and several others who have the time and the enthusiasm have offered to collect swarms for those who want them but are unable to go out on swarm calls themselves. Many members also hope to have extra swarms to make available to members.
If you currently have bees and may be having extra swarms to rehome, please, get ready NOW with file boxes that have been outfitted with a piece of screening on one side for ventilation, and expect to send your bees off in these boxes to their new homes! Charge whatever you feel is fair for your swarm(s). You may also want to arrange with other club members (on The Hive group list) to “swap swarms” so that you can bring new survivor genetics into your beeyard.
I would anticipate—and encourage—some funds to be exchanged for swarms. Swarm catchers will be giving up a lot of their free time to be available at the drop of a hat to drive hither and yon and gather these precious wild bees for us.
We decided that our swarm group will be for Bee Club members only. We advise nonmembers to sign up with the national Bee Allies Swarm List.
If you would like to be part of the swarm group—either to help collect swarms, or to procure a swarm, please contact Jody by email at email@example.com, after you’ve paid your membership dues.
Jacqueline will be offering two swarm classes this spring (please go to Meetup-Natural Beekeeping for dates and times). These classes are all day events, and packed full of all the information you could ever need to successfully gather a swarm on your own. They are always heavily attended so sign up early (at Meetup).
Funds collected from memberships are kept in their own account. We will be using them to pay upkeep for our website and any other club expenses. We hope to use the funds also to purchase new beekeeping books for a member lending library.
Our next meeting will be at Jacqueline’s farm on February 4th, Saturday from 10-1. It is coming up rather soon because we needed to change the club meeting date to the first Saturday of the month from now on. Please, come join the buzz!