Warm weather, sunshine, and the first blooms of the year are welcome signs for beekeepers and the hives they care for. Unfortunately, these indicators of spring can also inspire a lot of anxiety if you don’t have everything ready. The key to a successful apiary is preparation. Are you ready to help your honey bees through another warm, bright, and colorful beekeeping season? Double-check your gear and get ready with this list of the most important beekeeping equipment for spring.
Clean Protective Gear
Before your honey bees start poking their heads out of their hives, make sure your beekeeping suit and other protective gear are ready to go. When you take your suit, jacket, boots, gloves, and hat and veil out of storage, inspect them carefully for signs of wear and damage. Be sure to make any repairs or replacements now so that you don’t have to deal with a stray sting later in the season. It’s also a good idea to clean your protective gear before you take it out to the apiary—especially if you stored it near any other beekeeping equipment. Proper sanitation will reduce the risk of spreading diseases or parasites to your apiary, keeping your honey bees safe as they start their hives this spring.
Pollen Patties and Other Feed
When spring comes along, a honey bee colony will start to expand. To do this, the colony needs plenty of pollen to feed its brood. A well-fed brood turns into a healthy population of worker bees that can forage for resources, make honey, and help the colony achieve success throughout the season. Unfortunately, the weather and climate don’t always make it easy for your honey bees. Lingering cold weather, heavy spring showers, and other complications might prevent flowers from blooming or keep your honey bees inside longer than is ideal. That’s why it’s helpful to have pollen substitutes on hand to supplement your hive until they can gather enough resources for themselves.
Keep in mind that every honey bee colony is different. Pay attention to your local climate and the resources available to your hives. While pollen patties, sugar water, and other solutions are a great way to supplement your hives when they can’t gather resources themselves, you don’t want your honey bees to become reliant on you. You also don’t want your colony to grow too much too quickly. Pay attention to your colonies’ needs and the natural pollen flow of your environment to know when to give them pollen supplements.
No matter what’s on your list of the most important beekeeping equipment for spring, Mann Lake can help you find it. Grab quality equipment, educational resources, and other tools to help you make this year your best yet.