17732 SE 283rd Ave.
Umatilla FL 32784
D&J Will be CLOSED Thursday and Friday, November 23rd & 24th in Observance of the Thanksgiving Holiday! We hope you all have a Happy Thanksgiving.
Excuse our Dust
We are in the process of changing our E-commerce(shopping cart) provider for our Online Store. We are trying to provide a simpler, better internet shopping experience for our customers. In the coming weeks, you should notice a different look and feel to the Online Store. We are expecting a smooth transition into the new site, however, we all know “ Life Happens”. Should you encounter any issues with the site or the Store, please call the office so that we can get them resolved. Thanks for your patience and understanding.
Cooler Weather Ahead?
As a lot of you have experienced, this past year has been a challenging one for Beekeepers. If we back up to last November, you'll remember that just as the Fall Wildflower honey season was starting we had Hurricane Matthew pay us a visit, disturbing the habitat, and affecting the pollen and nectar sources available, causing a decline in brood production due to the lack of food source. Even though Matthew stayed along the East coast, the effects were felt across the state. Moving into December last year, on the rebound from Matthew, the weather stayed unseasonably warm making the bees think that Winter was still a long way off, causing them to put off storing a “reserve” of honey for the Winter. As good beekeepers, we realized that the bees were still struggling, and that there wasn’t much of a natural food source available, so we gave them sugar water and pollen! With this artificial food source, and warm weather the hives started to build up again, thinking we had skipped Winter and gone straight into Spring. January brought us more warm weather, and even had Citrus trees blooming almost two months early! The Spring was warm, and dry, and then Summer brought us the rain that we needed months earlier. All of this bringing us to the Fall, and a visit from Hurricane Irma causing widespread damage to the habitat across the state followed by a few days of cooler weather. This constant fluctuation in food source and temperature has had the bees “timing” all messed up. Remembering that the Queen lays eggs based on the availability of food, this has led to a very sporadic brood pattern, affecting hive population and strength making it very difficult for us as beekeepers to know what is going on with our hives. Don’t get discouraged! It’s all part of the natural cycle, but, I for one am hoping that this Winter is a very cold one to hopefully reset the natural balance and rhythm in our hives. While we’re experiencing this cool down, it is the perfect time to treat for mites, and American Foulbrood. Remember though, you need to get a Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) in order to purchase the antibiotics.
Mite Check Tutorial
This is the critical time of year when the mite population can quickly out number your bee population if it goes unchecked. The most effective way of checking for mites is the Alcohol wash. Yes I know, it requires killing a sample of approximately 300 bees, however this is better than losing an entire hive to mite damage.
Below is a link to a video that explains the process. This particular video is from New Jersey but it gives an accurate explanation of the entire process. Video credit: Northwest New Jersey Beekeepers Association
D&J will be implementing a 20% restocking fee on any returned merchandise