Archive | February, 2008

Securing a package

26 Feb

Installing a bee package/nucleusNot that I’ve ever had problems securing a burgeoning Springtime package before… but we’re talking about bees.

Between colony collapse disorder and nonspecific newbie floundering, a starter bee colony has been difficult to come by. Finally today, I received news that I’m solid.

Upon the advice of a local bee sage named T.J., I’ve ordered a #3 All-Star package from B. Weaver in Texas. Laura Weaver emailed me today to say that I’m on the list for delivery to Albuquerque in April. Rock star.

Until then, I’m trawling for bee videos on YouTube. Here are a few covering nucleus colony installation for your perusal and delight: Continue reading


Dear neighbors

25 Feb

Here’s the letter I left my neighbors last night regarding my upcoming insect invasion:

Dearest neighbor!

I’m thinking of inviting 10,000 of the world’s best pollinators to live in my backyard this summer. They’re quiet, docile, and oh, did I mention they produce honey?

I’d like to start a beehive. But before I do, let’s talk.

Do you have questions or concerns about bees? Is there anything you want to alert me to before I start a hive?

Of course, you’re always welcome to come and see them. In the meantime, here’s some information about how it all works. Continue reading

A nuc and a package and a queen, oh my!

22 Feb

Today, I’ve decided to host bees in my city backyard.

Some people call it “keeping bees,” others call it “having bees.” At this point, it’s more like this for me:

Entering a strange new world where thousands of stinging creatures live in my yard and I’m theoretically fine with this because I invited them in.

Chin up! Bee drama only exists on the evening news, I tell myself. That whole africanized thing was a myth.

And so today I’m ordering a #3 Allstar bee package (which is hopefully the same thing as a “nuc“) from B. Weaver. Not because I’m a discerning customer am I ordering the #3 Allstar type, but simply because some old guy in my local beekeeping group told me to.

When it comes to beekeeping, I’m learning apprenticeship matters. Sometimes, it’s best just to do what the seasoned folks tell you.