April and May are honey bee swarming months

The months of late April and May are honey bee swarming months. There’s a saying; if you catch a swarm in the month of May it’s worth a truck load of hay, if you catch one in June it’s worth a silver spoon and if you catch one in July there’s a good chance it will die. Well in the last month and a half I’ve caught 11 swarms. The wild honeybees I catch in my swarm traps that I set near the edge of the forests are mostly black! These black honeybees are survivors!! They winter over well, almost never die and make lots of honey!! I am in the process of converting my bee-yard from the typical Langstroth vertical standard hives to Long-Hives or Horizontal-Hives. I’ve been building them out of 2-1/4” thick red cedar slabs I’ve milled into proper boards. These hives are so thick the bees feel they’re in a hollow cedar tree. They are also very well insulated so the bees have a much easier time keeping the hive cool in the summer and warm in the winter! The other good thing for old beekeepers like me, is there is no more lifting heavy Langstroth boxes! The only thing you lift (once the Long-Hives are placed in its permanent location) is a single frame. No more back pain!! There is another huge plus to these black honeybees and the Long-Hives, that is the beekeeper never has to poison his hives again!! No more treating for Varroa mites. These black honey bees live with these mites and hive beetles in unison. There are hundreds if not thousands of living organisms in a honeybee hive. Introducing poisons puts their whole ecosystem out of balance, let alone hurts the bees and their honey!

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