The 2016 Honey season has come to an end. The night time temperatures have dropped, which means it’s time for the bees to pack down and time for the beekeeper to ensure they have warm, dry and well-supplied homes for the coming Winter.
Speaking for the Greater Redlands Area, it was a poor season. The Ironbark and Blue Gum put in a 20% effort if late Winter/Early Spring. We experienced a 12 weeks dearth of pollen and nectar from late November right through to early February. The Paperbark Tea Tree season was delayed with unusually hot days right into March. Then, to make matters worse, the onslaught of heavy rain from ex-cyclone Debbie caused dramas not only with the flowers, but with many a beekeeper on the ground.
In this last week, we have finally seen solid brood patterns and the smell honey coming from our hives – but it is likely they are eating almost as much as they are bringing in to keep their warmth up in these cool nights.
With a poor season behind us, and the cold weather in front of us, Malieta Honey is calling the end of the season – this means that the webshop will not have any honey or beeswax available from purchase from 7pm the 18th of April (already passed at the writing of this post). Every one should receive their late season orders by Friday this week.
My main job now is to ensure all my hives are in perfect order and replace any equipment that I need to fix up over the Winter period. All equipment (boxes, lids etc) that are taken from out field and stored for maintenance will be sterilised, given a new coat of paint and put to good use at the beginning of the 2017 Honey Season.
The Level 2 workshop has 4 Saturdays remaining and we will also be holding a Level 1 workshop on the 3rd of June for any one interested in getting into beekeeping themselves! Check out www.malietahoney.com.au/learn-beekeeping for full details.
A big thank you to every one who joined Malieta Honey along the way this season – Beekeeping Workshops by “TEK” students or lovers of honey alike.
Keep well, and keep warm!
Lionel & the pesky bees