Dalebees
Local honey, Bees and Queens from Long Island, New York
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Supplying Bees and Honey to Tri-state area

Providing Honey bee colonies and Queens produced on Long Island, New York

Honey bees are vital for our survival. They pollinate most of the fruits and vegetables that we eat. Everyday there are news stories about the challenges faced by honey bees and many factors that threaten their existance. Beekeeping is becoming popular as a hobby among people living in urban areas. You don't need much space to keep a colony. Not only you get to enjoy a rewarding hobby you also get to taste delicious honey.


Long Island is a great place to keep bees. There is plenty of flowering trees around us during the season that help bees to thrive. Our season starts in April with early blooming trees, maple being the major contributor. The main flow on Long Island ends in July. It is possible to extract honey in mid July. It is important to use an extractor to extract honey as after extraction, frames can be saved for use next year. Having drawn combs helps bees to start storing nectar early in the season. It also saves resources and labor required to draw new combs.


We are also fortunate that we are in the southern-most part of New York state and our winters are milder than that of rest of the state. (We are in Zone 6B in USDA Hardiness Zone Scale) Most of the hive deaths occur during winter as this is the most difficult time for the bees. During winter no new food is coming to the hive so they depend on their stores. They are also clustered together which promotes disease transmission. They are unable to fly out to defecate (bees do not defecate inside the hive.) It is important that they have enough honey stores to carry them through winter months. Starvation is one of the leading causes of colony collapse during winter. Other possible reasons of hive deaths during winter are Varroa mite, queen loss, lack of proper ventilation, ants, mice and bears and similar animals. It is important that the beekeeper spend adequate time preparing hives during months leading up to winter. Bees that have been reared locally usually do well during winter, compared to bees imported from other parts of the country.


In late winter queen starts laying eggs to increase hive population in preparation for early spring flow. When the flow starts the hive needs to have a large number of foragers. This is a critical period for the hive. This population expansion requires a large amount of honey and pollen, and beekeeper needs to keep an eye on food reserves of the hive at this time of the year. It is also important to make sure that there is enough space in the hive for this expansion. If the space is not sufficient, hive will make preparation to swarm.