- Sunday, March 3rd, 6-8pm
- Sunday, March 10th, 6-8pm
We will focus on two simple splits that make the most sense for backyard beekeepers: making a nuc and making a walk-away split. We will cover:
- how to make an easy split & which months work best
- how bees make new queens & the timeline of queen mating
- what can go wrong and how to fix it
- tips for learning how to see your queen, as it’s easier to make a split if you know where she is
- how to insert a queen cell into your split
As always this class focuses on what works in the SF Bay Area environment (an urban area with close neighbors and a mild, Mediterranean climate).
There are many benefits to splitting your hive in the spring (March-May):
- Swarm Prevention: Allows your bees to reproduce, but in a more controlled way than your bees swarming. Swarms often fly away and deplete your bees (not to mention anger your neighbors), whereas the splits you keep or give away.
- Redundancy: Gives you extra hives and queens in case one hive has problems.
- Mite Reduction: Some splits reduce mites greatly by causing broodless periods and can save you a mite treatment in May or June.
This class is for beginners who haven’t made a split yet. This class is also aimed at beekeepers who have split before and who need tips, tricks, and advice.
In-Person Making a Nuc Option: You have the option of coming to session where we make a nuc, tentatively scheduled for Sunday, April 28th, 11am-1pm. The backup date (in case of cold or rainy weather) is Saturday, May 4th. This will be an additional $30 and can be hosted at one of your hives.
Video and audio recordings will be sent after the class.
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke has been keeping bees in her backyard for 19+ years, and has developed the beekeeping education program at the BioFuel Oasis. She has a yearly bee mentorship program through her business Learn from the Bees. She keeps up with her bees’ growth in early spring and likes to split her hives every year around April 1st (& sometimes a second time at the end of May).