Hundreds of visitors viewed honey bee behavior in LCBA's observation hive, checked out educational displays, & asked our volunteers questions. On the weekend, visitors tasted 14 different varieties of Lewis County honey. Kids played "Bee Buzz ~ Who's Who in the Hive." Scroll down for pictures & details!
Thanks to the National Honey Board for donating recipe booklets & educational pamphlets about the making of honey!
Above, kids seek the queen in LCBA's observation hive.
LCBA's Observation Hive
Above, queen bee "Wanda Sue" & her retinue starred in the observation hive on Tuesday & Wednesday; below, kids of all ages enjoyed bee-watching through the week. Volunteers took bees home each evening & brought new frames in next morning to avoid stressing bees unduly.
Below, LCBA Volunteer Kent Yates answers a family's questions about bees in the hive:
Below, LCBA President Norm Switzler helps visitors find the queen:
Above, Norm shows queen to a visitor while LCBA volunteer Kevin Reichert, in background, answers questions about bee behavior; below, Kent, Norm, & visitors watch the bees:
Above, LCBA volunteer Mary Jo Christensen with visitors; below, volunteer Dahlia answers questions:
Below, Dahlia's brother & fellow volunteer Alex helps:
Above, Alex, Dahlia, & LCBA member Gordon Bellevue with visitors; below, the hive elicits some smiles:
Above, volunteer Tomme Trikosko answers questions; below, Little Miss Friendly & retinue watch for queen:
Above, LCBA member Gretchen Jones shows her daughter the bees; below, they peer into the hive's side ventilation holes:
Below, LCBA member Sharette Giese & Alesha:
Above, LCBA President Norm Switzler with a fairground bee attracted to the scent of the hive; below, President Norm & Secretary Susanne Weil with observation hive:
Above, sample paper wasp & wild honey bee hive hang above LCBA's observation hive as volunteers Alex (left) & Tomme (right) field visitors' questions.
Below, on Saturday, 8/17, LCBA celebrated National Honey Bee Day with our first ever "People's Choice" honey tasting & judging:
Below, a wild honey bee nest found in 2010 by members Kevin & Jeanne Reichert & Grant Inmon was a highlight:
Visitors could see how bees build comb in nature . . .
. . . in contrast with display of a paper wasp nest, below, also courtesy of Kevin, Jeanne, & Grant:
One educational display helped children identify "is it a honey bee ~ or something else," like a wasp, hornet, yellow jacket, or bumble bee?
Below, LCBA's busy exhibit: visitors taste honey while, left, President Norm Switzler helps others find queen in observation hive.
Below, Membership Coordinator Steve Howard shows visitors how a Langstroth hive works: to learn more about LCBA's mentor program, click here.
Below, hive components. At left, a nuc box for transporting a small colony or swarm. Next, the two white boxes are deep hive bodies, designed for long-term bee habitation; the boxes are topped by a telescoping cover for shelter; they sit on a screened bottom board, which provides stability & ventilation. That's a Boardman feeder tucked into the hive entrance, with a bucket feeder right foreground, in front of a division board feeder. At right, the green honey super is topped by a queen excluder, whose bars are spaced to prevent the queen's wider abdomen from getting through: the excluder is normally placed between a deep body & super to prevent a queen from laying eggs in the honey super (you don't want protein in your honey!).
Below, some tools of the beekeeping trade: from left, gloves, hat & veil, sugar-spray bottle - an alternative to the smoker, next on the right; front row, a frame puller, bee brush, & hive tool.
Above, LCBA volunteer Mike Helms answers questions about the Top Bar hive, which allows bees to build comb in the shapes they choose; below, close-up of Top Bar hive, built by LCBA Vice President Dave Gaston: top left, sample frame of comb & capped honey:
Above, gifts from the honey bee hive in Sharette Giese's display; below, Sharette's interactive "parts of the honey bee" board game for children:
LCBA's display also featured photos from our Swarm & Colony Removal "Bee Team," whose members rescued over 50 colonies of honey bees from places where they were not wanted in 2013 alone: for more information about our Bee Team, click here.
Above, LCBA's display included information on challenges to honey bee health: parasitic Varroa destructor and tracheal mites, the gut fungus Nosema ceranae, habitat loss, lack of genetic diversity, & pesticides, particularly neonicotinoids. Below, the August 13 cover of TIME Magazine asks what is killing honey bees: to read the article, click here; to learn more, visit our Bees in the News page.
Honey bees are not the only pollinators at risk: LCBA's exhibit included information about mason bees & bumblebees, thanks to contributions from members Kimo Thielges & Rob Jenkins:
Below, Kimo's mason bee display: to learn more about these great early season pollinators, visit our Mason Bee page.
Below, LCBA's "See the Bees!" sign lured swarms of humans to the Floral Building:
Above, someone seems to enjoy tasting local honey ~ to view photos of our Honey Contests & our children's game, "Bee Buzz ~ Who's Who in the Hive," scroll up & click on the next photo gallery!