Queens purchased from far away locations, typically from southern state, do not survive well in the cool damp Northwest. To avoid this yearly high hive loss and cost, Northwest Queens has stepped up to offer the following:
1. A management philosophy that allows for “Sustainable Beekeeping”. Applying this approach, all losses are replaced from within, not purchased yearly. This keeps your apiary genetics closed to outside potentially undesirable factors. New genetics should only be added after careful evaluation and should be a part of your diversity plan.
2. Northwest Queens’ ongoing mission is to develop queens suited for the Northwest climate that are very disease and parasite resistant without compromising honey production. Here we have taken a strong position on not using any form of treatment, natural or otherwise, just “bees in a box”.
3. Improvements in the hive design will be made to address unique climate factors as well as creating a more hostile environment for their enemies. This will include methods to reduce the moisture within the hive as well as ways to minimize the residual poison that can enter the hive from the wax in the purchased comb starter foundation used in the frames.
4. Finding electronic solutions to manage pest problems and wirelessly reporting hive status. This will slowly begin to show up on the new website, HivePatrol.com. I’ve been working for years on a safe electronic method for reducing the varroa mite levels within the hive. This year 2017 will test new approaches to the in hive portion. Prototype testing so far has exposed shortcomings that has been addressed and need to be tested in the coming months.
Over the many years of queen distribution we are building a team of beekeepers with similar views as our. Their input helps greatly in the selection process. If you have common goals aligned with what we are doing, now is the time to become part of this effort. This is the plan, and many more years of hard work are required to reach it.
I hope you will want to be part of this,
P.S. My costs are high and little is free. I go through a little shy of two tons of sugar a year feeding my nuc’s. I’ve added ads to my site in hopes you will click on them with some interest so I might generate needed funding. Thanks
Winter 2008 in the Northwest: