Beekeeper’s Calendar

Why is this Calendar Important?

Knowing what is going on in your hive each month is important and a great benefit to your Beekeeping practices

What you will learn?
  • Monthly Bee Activity
  • Necessary actions to help your bees establish a happy and healthy hive?

January

January is the prime time of the year to order more Bees. If you have Bees already established Hives you will want to feed your Hive to help them build more Brood.

February

Only continue feeding if you see that your hive is love on capped honey. You should be inspecting your Hive and checking for eggs as well as the Queen. Keep an eye out for swarm cells and swarming behavior. Check for capped brood and healthy Brood pattern. This is also the time to check for Varroa mites and medicate the Hive if needed.

March

You will continue to pay attention to swarm behavior and cells as well as adding a Queen excluder (if you don’t have one) and Honey Supers. Also check the honey supply in your hive.

April

In the Spring the Queen begins laying eggs like crazy if she is happy and healthy.This is also usually the time of year that you can add new Bees to your space, if you haven’t already. Continue observing for swarms and evaluating the Honey storage. By this time an individual Hive can contain up to 60,000 Bees, so making sure your Hive has enough space is important to prevent swarming. This is also the time of year where you can collect swarms.

May

You will want to look for supercedure (replacement Queen) cells. Hooray, for Honey. This is the time to harvest your honey if your Bees have stored a good amount. If your Bees have stored a good amount and all your frames are full you can add another Honey Super to your hive.

June

June is when it starts heating up in the valley so checking the ventilation of your Hive is important. You can also feed if needed and test again for Varroa mites.

July

This is the time of year where you don’t want to disturb your Hive as often. A visual check should be sufficient to know if your Bees are doing well or not. You will also want to check and secure your Hives and make sure that they are stable enough to withstand the wind and monsoon weather.

August

Continue to check your Hives ventilation and remove level 3 honey supers. You will also need to extract any excess honey on the supers and let the Bees fill the remaining hive boxes with as much honey as they can for the remaining part of the year.

September

If you haven’t removed the extra honey supers you will need to do so at this time. Test again for Varroa mites and medicate if needed. You can also order new Bees and Queens at this time.

October

The Fall is an amazing time for Bees, they should be collecting lots of pollen and other food. If your Hive is low on capped honey you will need to feed them. Inspect your Hive every couple of weeks and check for eggs and Queen. You can also order more Bees during this time if needed.

November

The month of November can be referred to as the end of the yearly but at ABC Mobile Education Center LLC. And other AZ Beekeepers see it as the beginning of a new Bee year. If we are lucky temperatures usually drop which allows Bees to limit their foraging activities and any unnecessary flights outside the hive This is the perfect opportunity to check on your tools and equipment so you know what items need repairing or replacing. It is also the perfect time in Arizona to start a new Hive and purchase new Queens. (which you will do every 3 – 5 years)

Only inspect your Hive when the temperature is 60 degrees or higher. You will also need to feed your Bees to help them build Brood.

If you’re planning on ordering packages for the spring, this is a good time to place orders from a local Bee Farmer if you have access to one. The colder months are also a great time to build and paint new hives for future use. It’s always great to have an extra hive or two on hand for capturing swarms.

December

During this time of year, depending on where you are located most people start to hunker down and keep warm but in Arizona it looks a little different. If your Bees are located in an area that is mildly cool they will still have access to native flowers and other flowering plants in the area.

Usually during this time Bees will also be working hard to maintain a temperature of 90-94 degrees.

Happy Beekeeping!

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