Honeybee Instrumental Insemination

After completing two courses at the University of California, Davis Mary devoted a full year to mastering instrumental insemination – while still managing 100 plus hives and 15 out yards. We decided to sell our instrumental insemination equipment after we discovered the effort required to master instrumental insemination was taking time away from our normal … Read more

Beekeeper donates Nikon Microscope

We took our 1st instrumental insemination course at the University of California, Davis in 2007. In 2008 Mary went back to California to complete the advanced instrumental insemination course with Sue Cobey. Back at home we had setup a really nice lab in our guest room with all the required insemination equipment, including a Nikon … Read more

New Carniolan Queens Hatching

We are pleased with our current crop of Carniolan Queens which have emerged since July 4th. They are daughters of our 2011 Susan Cobey breeder and they are very dark in color. Time will tell about their performance, but we expect them to be as good as all of Sue’s queens have been.  We will … Read more

Russian & Carniolan Breeding Yards

We are running two honeybee breeding yards; our Russian Honey Bee breeding yard, a picture (above) of it which is being used in our blog banner, and 8.5 miles away is our New World Carniolan  Honey Bee breeding yard (a picture below this post). We just moved out 41 capped Russian queen  cells and 36 … Read more

Cloake Board Day 6

We have completed 7 grafting sessions – so far we have grafted approximately 400 eggs this season. Yesterday was day 6 of the Cloake Board method for grafting session 7. I had to remove the slide and close the main entrance which was originally rotated  180 degrees on day 3. Since it was raining I … Read more

Russian & Carniolan Queens Available in July

We have been selecting our queens as they get mated and begin laying, culling any that don’t measure up.  We alternate the graftings of each breeder queen, so Russians and Carniolans are ready in batches. We expect to have queens ready on the following dates: June 29th July 6th July 12th July 20th Let us know … Read more

Russian & Carniolan Queens are Laying

Our 1st Russian Queens are laying nice solid patterns and we have begun to send them to their new homes.  We have a few of these left for anyone in immediate need.  Russian Queens from our 2nd grafting are also laying well and we will be evaluating them next week. Last Saturday our Carniolan daughters emerged. … Read more

Setting up Carniolan Breeding Yard

Tuesday  and Wednesday we began setting up our second breeding yard which is 8 miles from our Russian breeding yard. We began moving in empty triple and double mating Nucs and then  added frames of bees to those Nucs. By end of day Wednesday we had distributed 21 queen cells from their incubator hive. We … Read more

Russian & Carniolan Grafting Status

It has been a most frustrating spring with unrelenting rain and cold nights. Our earliest efforts at queen rearing were unsatisfactory but now Russian queens from our first grafting should begin laying early next week.  In addition Russian queens from our second grafting should begin laying the first week of June and Carniolan queens from our third  grafting should begin … Read more

Cloake Board Method-Day 4

It is raining AGAIN, and we want to graft from our best Carniolan queen tomorrow. So we set up a tent over the cell builder hive so we could work through the rain. Today is day 4 of the Cloake Board method of queen rearing – we need to close up the top half of the cell … Read more