The dearth period in beekeeping (a few pics included)

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  • Labeeman

    Well-Known Member
    Silver Member
    Rating - 100%
    23   0   0
    Oct 11, 2010
    909
    28
    Baton Rouge
    A dearth period in beekeeping is when there is no nectar flow taking place which can be a rough time for bees. With no nectar coming in the bees are restless and the queen can slow her laying down as fresh nectar stimulates her to lay. The main nectar flow in Louisiana usually starts around Mid May and ends in mid June. The main plant that the bees make honey from in South Louisiana is the Chinese Tallow tree. This is an invasive species that has been in the US for over 100 years. It produces a 3-6 inch long tassel that produces tons of nectar and the bees love it. As a beekeeper I love it also, but for many it is a pain in the @$$. It grows just about anywhere and loves pastures and fence lines. It’s hard to control and because it grows so fast it is a constant battle for people who don’t want it on their property. This year was a good year for making honey and my bees did a great job of getting it to the hive. I harvested most of my honey in July, but this week I’m making one final round and harvesting any honey that is still on the hive and getting the bees set up for fall and winter. Once the tallow flow is over there is just not that much for the bees to forage on until the golden rod plant blooms in the fall. After I extract my honey I put my empty supers ( bee boxes) out for the bees to clean which is usually done in a single day, but during a dearth period they will clean them up in a matter of hours. If a good nectar flow is taking place you can put a bowl of honey out and the bees will not touch it. They prefer nectar over honey any day, as long as a good natural flow is on, but when the dearth starts they will devour any thing that has sugar in it. I am including some pictures to show just how many bees will gather to clean up the supers. This is at my house and while it looks insane and to some scary the bees normally aren’t aggressive and you can walk right up and watch them do their work. Y’all stay safe out there and stay cool as the heat is super intense this week especially in the morning.
    a0d9b7c51bda887dc5d7c2a259b2539f.jpg

    4d60bbe9bad1802f173e6d882635e7f1.jpg

    399fe0688620192606c8fa6c55ce0ec7.jpg



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     

    WhereIsIt?

    Well-Known Member
    Rating - 100%
    15   0   0
    Sep 30, 2020
    466
    28
    Gretna, La
    I've said this before in one of your posts.. I wish we had a spot to do this. Be a good learning experience for me and my son. Idk how the neighbors would react to having bees flying all over.

    Tactitools and blanket statements... Welcome to Bayoushooter.
     

    jakemacz

    Active Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Mar 23, 2011
    27
    3
    A dearth period in beekeeping is when there is no nectar flow taking place which can be a rough time for bees. With no nectar coming in the bees are restless and the queen can slow her laying down as fresh nectar stimulates her to lay. The main nectar flow in Louisiana usually starts around Mid May and ends in mid June. The main plant that the bees make honey from in South Louisiana is the Chinese Tallow tree. This is an invasive species that has been in the US for over 100 years. It produces a 3-6 inch long tassel that produces tons of nectar and the bees love it. As a beekeeper I love it also, but for many it is a pain in the @$$. It grows just about anywhere and loves pastures and fence lines. It’s hard to control and because it grows so fast it is a constant battle for people who don’t want it on their property. This year was a good year for making honey and my bees did a great job of getting it to the hive. I harvested most of my honey in July, but this week I’m making one final round and harvesting any honey that is still on the hive and getting the bees set up for fall and winter. Once the tallow flow is over there is just not that much for the bees to forage on until the golden rod plant blooms in the fall. After I extract my honey I put my empty supers ( bee boxes) out for the bees to clean which is usually done in a single day, but during a dearth period they will clean them up in a matter of hours. If a good nectar flow is taking place you can put a bowl of honey out and the bees will not touch it. They prefer nectar over honey any day, as long as a good natural flow is on, but when the dearth starts they will devour any thing that has sugar in it. I am including some pictures to show just how many bees will gather to clean up the supers. This is at my house and while it looks insane and to some scary the bees normally aren’t aggressive and you can walk right up and watch them do their work. Y’all stay safe out there and stay cool as the heat is super intense this week especially in the morning.
    a0d9b7c51bda887dc5d7c2a259b2539f.jpg

    4d60bbe9bad1802f173e6d882635e7f1.jpg

    399fe0688620192606c8fa6c55ce0ec7.jpg



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Phenomenal!
     

    Trailboss

    Well-Known Member
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    7   0   0
    Apr 2, 2013
    370
    28
    Norwood LA
    I always worried letting the bees clean empty supers would start robbing, but I guess if you removed all the honey, there would be nothing left in the hives to rob.
     

    Labeeman

    Well-Known Member
    Silver Member
    Rating - 100%
    23   0   0
    Oct 11, 2010
    909
    28
    Baton Rouge
    I try to keep the wet honey supers far enough away from my hives so robbing doesn’t start, but I do have to deal with that at times. I also only leave them for a day then I prep them for storage and stack them under a lean to off of my shed.
     

    Labeeman

    Well-Known Member
    Silver Member
    Rating - 100%
    23   0   0
    Oct 11, 2010
    909
    28
    Baton Rouge
    Besides the bees, there are many different insects that get in on the free honey and pollen. Wasp, bumblebees, beetles, and moths are all commonly found around the honey supers. The beetles and moths are looking for a place to lay eggs which is a whole other story, but for the most part they all gather without too much trouble.
     

    AK shooter

    Redneck with a gun!
    Rating - 100%
    27   0   0
    Apr 12, 2008
    3,665
    48
    Raceland
    I've said this before in one of your posts.. I wish we had a spot to do this. Be a good learning experience for me and my son. Idk how the neighbors would react to having bees flying all over.

    Tactitools and blanket statements... Welcome to Bayoushooter.
    There are people that keep bees in neighborhoods. Having a couple of hives is not uncommon. I saw some of mine bringing in orange pollen. Don't know where they are getting it.
     

    mylongscreenname

    Well-Known Member
    Rating - 100%
    2   0   0
    Aug 17, 2020
    53
    8
    Baton Rouge, LA
    I've said this before in one of your posts.. I wish we had a spot to do this. Be a good learning experience for me and my son. Idk how the neighbors would react to having bees flying all over.

    Tactitools and blanket statements... Welcome to Bayoushooter.
    I encourage you to go for it. Someone introduced my son and I to this hobby a few years ago. He is now 16 and can manage the hives pretty much on his own. It is a great learning experience for all. My neighbors love the attention the bees give their flower beds, backyard gardens and fruit trees. They also do not mind when random jars of honey are delivered to their front porch. Like hunting, shooting, and fishing. This can be a great activity for the entire family.
     
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