BEGINNERS: This is the time of waiting and preparing for bees. Beekeepers will receive their bees from the beginning of March till the end of May. If you are waiting on bees, it would be best to continue acquiring your beekeeping equipment, suit or jacket and painting any unpainted boxes or trying your hand at creatively painting them. Continue learning and connecting with local beekeepers.
ESTABLISHED HIVES: You should notice more activity around the hive as the temperature outside increases. With weather warming and early pollen being brought in, bees will begin feeding protein to older larvae and young bees. As the brood grows, monitor the main food stores during this time as they will quickly consume feed. Protein patties are ideal feed at this time along with liquid feed.
Toward the end of the month, on a 55°F or warmer, non-windy day, you’ll want to light your smoker and delve into the brood chamber for your first in depth inspection of the year. If you haven’t already, check for damaged frames and signs of water in the hive, and check the brood pattern and larva for diseases.
Now is a great time to see bees pollinating flowers, trees and other plants.
Estimated time (2 hours):
- Switch entrance reducer to medium size
- Order bees and other equipment and supplies if you haven’t yet
- Check the hive food stores
- Continue checking hive entrance for blockage as needed
- Make sure all unpainted boxes are painted, dry and ready to install bees
- Continue learning through local bee clubs, associations, meetings or workshops
- Network with local beekeepers to learn what they’re doing, when and what works
- Backyard Beekeeping Kit if you haven't already
- Order Live Bees if you haven't already
- Purchase additional components if replacing old/damaged parts from prior year
- Tools & Clothing - Suit or Jacket, Gloves, Frame Grips, Hive Stand
- Feed - liquid and/or pollen patties as often as needed