Have questions? We've got answers! This time of year, our phones start ringing off the hook. To get the fastest answers to your simplest questions, check out this list of FAQs!
Starting this year bee orders may be placed ONLINE, as well as in store, or over the phone!
Nucs // $200 each
Q: Where do I pick up my bees?
A: TBA ~ don't worry, you will receive an email as SOON as we know!
Q: What if I'm not available on the date of pick up?
A: Our pick up works in waves. If you're not available during the first wave, we'll push your name to the top of the list of the second, and then so forth until there are no more waves left. PLEASE NOTE: NUC PICK UPS ARE ALWAYS IN THE MORNING, generally between 8-10am.
Unfortunately, there is no way for us to save your nuc for you if you cannot pick up on any of these days. Our best advice is to ask a friend (perhaps from your local bee club) to pick it up on your behalf and have them do the initial installation for you.
Q: I want to have someone mark my queen. How do I go about doing this?
A: Queen-Marking services are available on a first-come, first-served on the day of pick up, and can be paid at time of pickup in cash or check. The fee this year will be $7.00.
Q: Can I keep the cardboard nuc box?
A: YES! This year we are not asking for nuc boxes to be returned. If you do not want to keep it, however, we will take it back and reuse it.
We ARE, however, asking for the package boxes back, if you decide on that option. You may purchase the plastic screened box for $5 if you would like to keep it, otherwise the box must be returned to the store in a timely fashion.
Q: Can I leave my bees in their nuc box?
A: No. If you leave them in their nuc box too long, even with the plug out, they will swarm.
Q: What breeds of bees are available?
A: The bees from our supplier are Italians or Carniolans, or a hybrid of the two.
Q: What if I want a specific breed of bees?
A: Unfortunately, you can't request a specific breed at this time. You can purchase a queen separately to re-queen to your preferred breed.
Q: How do I install my nuc?
A: Before the day of pick up, make sure your bee yard, bear fence, and hive are bee-ready. (For example, paint your bee-boxes ahead of time, as after your bees arrive, it will be quite difficult to do!) If you're a first timer, you may want to have your bee-mentor or a friend from your bee club assist you in installation. Your steps will essentially consist of a night-before prep for feeding sugar syrup, picking up your bees, putting them in the hive, and observing as things go forward.
The Night Before:
Prep a sugar syrup with a 1:1 ratio of sugar and water for feeding when your bees arrive.
The Day of:
Pick up your bees as early as possible– the longer they're locked in their nuc box, the more bees' lives are at risk from overheating. Make sure the yellow plug and lid are secure so they won't escape in the car, and that they won't tip over or be overheated in the journey home so they don't arrive agitated. Once at the bee yard, light up your smoker. Put your entrance reducer into your hive box's entrance, and open your hive by taking off your telescoping top and inner cover.
Remove the center five frames in your hive. Open your cardboard nuc box and lightly smoke your bees. Place these frames, one at a time, into the spaces where you removed the five empty frames in your box, in the same order that they were in the nuc box, checking that you have a queen. After putting the bees in the hive, make sure to feed your bees with whatever method you've chosen (we don't suggest entrance feeders as they can cause robbing). Close up the hive and leave the nuc box out and open nearby, so any straggling bees can fly into their new home as evening falls.
Your bees have taken up residence at your hive! Do not disturb your bees for at least a week except to feed, letting them acclimate to their new home in peace.