local-honey-bee-suppliesRJ Honey Farm

Thanksgiving for Bees

thanksgiving-turkey-hive- candyboard

While you are eating turkey your bees get a candy board.

Why use a candy board?

Supplemental and emergency food. The last several years we've had pretty mild winters in Indiana. That keeps resource consumption down. Your hive needs to have 80-100 pounds of honey to have a chance to get through the winter and thrive in early spring. If you haven't weighed your hive this
beekeeper's scale is a great tool. Weigh the hive from the back of the bottom board and multiply by 2. That's how we do it. We've found it to be a pretty accurate measurement.

Bees move up during the winter. If we get a prolonged cold spell the cluster is stuck. The bees can't move. If it stays too cold for too long they will starve out. You'll see a big wad of bees with just their butts sticking out; all dead. A candy board above them can be a life saver for your bees.

Moisture control. Bees keep the cluster interior about 92 degrees. They make moisture when they make this heat by shivering their wings. Think of it as sweating while you exercise. This hot moist air hits the cold inner cover and condenses. If there is enough moisture it forms drops and rains on the bees. Like us they can take some cold, but not cold and wet. This will kill them. You'll see a ball of bees that look all greasy. A candy board will absorb moisture.

The candy board also has an upper entrance if there's a snow hard enough to cover the bottom entrance. Bees need the ventilation. They also need to go out and cleanse (poop). The snow will look like it has been carpet bombed with lots of yellow/orange dots.

Say Happy Thanksgiving to your honey bees! Here's the
candy board and recipe.