Canada goldenrod

Once this invasive species flowers it marks the end of the honey harvest. Bees, flies and other nectar gathering insects love this plant, probably due to the fact that there are virtually no other flowers around this time and this thing propagates like wildfire and can be seen everywhere. It would be nice if it’s nectar yielded mouthwatering honey but sadly it doesn’t, it just doesn’t.

Giant Asian Hornets

For any bee keeper losing a hive is a sad time. I am lucky enough to keep the Japanese honeybee, a very sturdy honeybee. In fact the only time I really need to worry about my hives is during the autumn months when the giant asian hornet decides to turn it’s radar onto my hives.

It’s been well documented that Japanese honeybees can ward off attacks from these hornets, however I have found that if the hornets are persistent enough the bees really have no chance.

The beekeeper does have one weapon in their arsenal which uses the Japanese Hornets pheromones against itself. Using sticky paper they catch one Hornet, and then make it super angry (this is not hard to do 🙂 ) . After catching this hornet we then lay the paper in the path of the oncoming hornets and one by one they die to there sticky deaths.

aftermath of hornet attack
Aftermath of hornet attack, bees gone, honey intact, larvae eaten.

 

 

 

2016 First Harvest!

Happy Honey Harvest 2016!

Well it’s my first harvest of the year,  Lets hope the year brings a lot more honey. Yum Yum…. home for me!

Raw Honey
First Harvest for 2016

Winter 2015-2016

I still have at least one more month until winter is over and I am in the clear. So far I haven’t lost any hives but two are not looking great, So this year I decided to feed them 200cc of sugar water every 10 days to 14 days, I hope it’s enough.

Weeding is a must!

Well it’s my birthday today, so why not do something interesting on your birthday 🙂

On Thursdays I generally check on the Hatada apiaries and today I noticed that the Perilla had started to take their dance of death and turn brown and honesty the stone terraces just weren’t looking good.

I knew this is gonna happen and had been putting off weeding that section of the apiary because I  just don’t like weeding and there are a lot of snakes

I had decided on only weeding around the beehives, but being a  Mr. Can’t stop when he gets started ended up pulling all the Perilla.

Now next, I’ve just got to get rid of all the Madagascar ragwort around the hives.
before_after2 before_after

Hatada Updates

Population of Japanese honey bee colony over the season

Very interesting to see the changes over the year with my Japanese honey bees.

  1.  Swarm caught a settled in (+1 Month,June)
  2. Feeling hot hot, The peak of summer. On the flow (Mid August)
  3. Summer is over, hornet attacks have stopped. Time to get ready for winter (early Nov)
  4. Population is dropping (Dec)
  5.  Midwinter, Population at an all time low. (Mid Feb)
  6. Two weeks later and the population is starting to grow back.
  7. Two after that and the population is at full strength.
  8. Getting ready to swarm. (Start of May)
  9. Just after swarming.
  10. Post swarm plus five days
  11. Three weeks later and the colony is bigger than ever.

Getting Stung, no biggy

When people hear I keep bees, The first thing they generally ask me is

  1. How much honey do you make?
  2. Do you get stung?

Which I answer..

Not enough.

and

Yes! I get stung all the time

But like most other bee keepers I don’t really mind it at all. It’s all the other things that want to sting, bite or eat which bother me and on the list right now of annoying things are horse flies.

 

Wild sesame perilla

In less than four months, Following very wet rainy season the stone terraces have turned a brilliant green. At first I had no idea what this weed was and it turns out it’s a very common herb/spice used in Korean cuisine and known as wild sesame. It’s suppose to flower at the end of summer around September hopefully and is a good nectar source so I been told, I just hope the honey doesn’t smell like the leaves 🙂