vintage-beehive-clipart-vector-about-beehive-clipart-item-magz-library-58500-500x407.jpgFive Rivers Bee Club Monthly Minutes on 14 January 2021 vintage-beehive-clipart-vector-about-beehive-clipart-item-magz-library-58500-500x407.jpg


Location: Hardy Civic Center * 301 Main Street * Hardy AR 72542

Meeting began at 6:30 P.M. with opening prayer given by Johnny Niswonger.

We had 27 in attendance:  24 members, 3 quests.

December minutes were accepted as posted by the members.

Treasurers Report:  We currently have $549.98.  Any member is welcome to look at the books.

Lonnie Perry redeemed his Christmas ticket for a free tee shirt.   We only have small, XX-large and XXX-large left.  We are out of medium, large and x-large.

Lonnie brought in a NUC to give away as a Door Prize at end of the meeting.  The Carriger's (Sarah and Kyle) won it.  CONGRATULATIONS.  Enjoy.

Jacque English relayed she updated the club information with and  the State of Arkansas 501©3 Paperwork reflecting the new Officers for 2021.

She also read the Thank you letter to the Hardy A&P on behalf of the club for allowing us to meet the Hardy Civic Center.

The website is updated and has a new navigation bar, plus an added social program.  We know a few folks that do not have or use Facebook, this is a nice alternative.

Lonnie awarded Vernon Lamb a plaque.

William Kaebler talked to a group "Hives for Heroes" out of Batesville.  Hives for Heroes is a national military veteran non-profit organization focusing on honey bee conservation, suicide prevention, and a healthy transition from service.  They are a national network of beekeepers and veterans providing purpose, education, and healthy relationships fostering a lifelong hobby in beekeeping.  Hives for Heroes is a Texas based 501c3 Non Profit Organization   EIN: 83-1465397

William asked if we had map of our club coverage.  We do not at this time.

Jake Mackey donated an extractor to the club.  We now have 2 on hand for members to check out to harvest honey.  Thank you for your generosity.

Wallene Fraizer made some homemade lip balm using coconut and bee wax.  She passed out samples to everyone.  Thank you very much, I use mine all the time.

Guest speaker was Myron Kroph.  He sells NUCs, they all have new comb, no old comb.

He has been in the business for 20 years, he uses no chemicals for mite control.

4 frames of brood, 1 pollen side, 1 honey side.  No Queen. Shaken bees 3lbs inside closed up.

Uses pint jar of sugar water to help feed.

Locked in for 24 hours then open doorway

Control temperature / moisture / food source

Splits try to take from different yard away from original.

80% queen success rate

Start NUCs end of March time frame

Over winter NUCs - 1 year old NUC

Mix of Russians

Stay away from Light colored Italian.  They tend to attract mites / produces less / weak in the winter

Comb honey looks good with this wire.  Stainless steel wire .014guage

Inspect hives for good comb honey when extracting honey. 

Use 12v battery on wire to pull out comb cleanly.

$2.50 a box for comb honey (think he is all sold out at the moment)  Our members was purchasing quickly.

5 frame NUCs: $125.00 over winter and $100.00 new

Packages $90.00 (3 lbs)

Call now to place your orders 870.458.3002. 

Next speaker was William Kaebler on "How to make homemade Honey Pro for your bees".

High nutrition HBH with Mushroom extract

10-25 lbs sugar (dependent on sugar/water “feeding ratio” 1:1, 1:2, or 2:1)

{this “5gal” recipe is ~1:1 ratio using 25 pounds of sugar}
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 Tablespoon molasses (unsulphered)
4-5 ml Wintergreen essential oil

4-5 ml Lemongrass essential oil

8 ml Tinder Conk mushroom extract

8 ml Reishi mushroom extract

4-5 Sunflower Lecithin gelcaps

(remove from gelcaps and mix with small amount of sugar in “coffee grinder”) {EMULSIFIER}

~4.5 gal Water



Molasses, a highly viscous by-product of sugar refinement, is a great supplement for improving your garden. Molasses is rich in both micro- and macro- nutrients, is a great source of carbohydrates for soil microbes, and subsequently boosts the structure and moisture retention of the medium, and encourages growth of beneficial organisms. Molasses also aids in the reduction of salt build up, which is a common cause of nutritional problems, and is a useful insect repellent. While microbes thrive on the sugars in molasses, ingesting molasses for an insect is imminent death (Excluding Sugar Ants and Bees).

Not all molasses is the same, however. Some are made to a lesser quality, and may contain preservatives and other chemical additives that are unwanted in the garden. There are two types of molasses: Sulphured and Unsulphured. While both of types do contain sulphur, the major distinction is that sulphured molasses contains sulphur dioxide, which acts as a preservative and anti-microbial substance. This means that sulphured molasses will actually kill the microbes you are trying to feed. So make sure that you only use unsulphured, organic molasses. There are three grades of molasses, from lighter to darker: mild (a.k.a Barbados), dark, and blackstrap. Blackstrap molasses is preferred for its higher mineral and vitamin content. Blackstrap is high in calcium, magnesium, iron, potassium, and micronutrients.

Why use essential oils in beekeeping? “Beekeepers may wish to use the natural miticides for various reasons: as an alternative to, or in rotation with, synthetic miticides that are failing due to varroa resistance; to give the colonies a break from chemical sublethal effects or comb contamination; to avoid miticide toxicity to drones and queens; to meet “organic” production standards (when allowed); or due to personal preferences or concern about chemical residues in honey.” Randy Oliver,

Essential Oils Used

There are over 100 oils that may be used in one form or another. The most common essential oils used in beekeeping are lemongrass, spearmint and thyme (thymol oil). Other oils such as wintergreen, eucalyptus (eucalyptol), peppermint, menthol, and tea tree oil are also used in some formulations and included here.

Lemon Grass: The smell of lemon grass is believed to closely mimic the attractant pheromone produced from a worker bee’s nasonov gland. Lemon Grass oil contains geranic acid, citral and geraniol; some of the components of nasonov pheromone. Lemon grass oil is used in a variety of ways with honeybees. It is also used in supplemental food to stimulate the bees to eat the food, to help food from going bad (it has anti-fungal and anti-viral properties), in a spray bottle to calm the bees, and to introduce a new queen by giving all of the bees and queen the same smell. It is also commonly used in bait hives to attract swarms.

The biggest caveat to using lemon grass oil is that during periods of dearth, the smell may attract robber bees to the hives.

Thymol: Thymol, the oil from thyme plants, is one of the most used essential oils in the treatment of Varroa mites. It can be found in commercial products like Apiguard and ApiLife Var. It works by confusing the mite and blocking it's pores. Used in combination with a screened bottom board the mites become confused, fall to the ground through the screen and are unable to climb back up into the hive. All of the mint family essential oils can be used to help with Varroa mite control. It is antifungal and also used for treatment or prevention of Chalkbrood.

Eucalyptol: Used in preparations to control Varroa mites.

Menthol: Used for control of Tracheal mites.

Wintergreen: Used in grease patties for control of Tracheal and Varroa mites. It is helpful against Small Hive Beetles.

Spearmint: Often used in conjunction with Lemon Grass oil during feeding to improve hive health. Also useful against Varroa mites and works in much the same way as Thymol oil.

Peppermint: General purpose pheromone masking scent that does not mimic any of the honeybee pheromones. (Any strong scented essential oil will work for this).

Tea Tree: Used in grease patties for control of mites. It can be interchanged with Wintergreen with no loss of effectiveness.

Essential Oil Therapy

Varroa Mites

Essential oils control Varroa in two ways, directly or through the blood of the bee. When a varroa mite comes in direct contact with wintergreen or tea tree oil mixed in a grease patty, the mites usually die in a few minutes. The infected bee must however, walk across or feed on the patty. Therefore direct toxicity cannot be counted on to control these mites, it can only aid in controlling. Studies suggest that mite reproduction can be inhibited when bees are fed a syrup containing essential oils. The oils are passed from bees to other bees and larva through trophallaxis (that is the direct transfer of food or fluids from one bee to another. Remember bees feed each other and create food for larvae). When the female varroa feeds on the larvae, she is poisoned.

Many beekeepers are using Thymol oil or crystals to treat for Varroa. The biggest problem is controlling the dosage. Thymol is lethal to bees at two to four times the concentration it takes to kill the mites. Thymol is temperature dependent. It is best used between 60 degrees F and 90 degrees F. Crystals evaporate too quickly in hot temperatures increasing exposure limits to bees. It must be applied two to three times. It is not registered in the US. The standard dosage is 8 to 12 mg of crystals in a small dish on the top bars of the hive. Dosage of oils is dependent on the purity of the oils and cannot be addressed here.

Tracheal Mites

Essential oils appear to impact breeding and control of Tracheal mites. This however, remains anecdotal as proper methods of observation have not been established. The best therapy remains the grease patties. It is recommended that grease patties containing essential oils be kept in the hive throughout the winter and any season when honey collection for human consumption is not taking place. If temperatures permit flight, syrups containing essential oils can be fed as long as honey collections are not being performed.

Small Hive Beetles

Traps or biological controls such as entomopathogenic nematodes are the most common nonpesticide paths to control. The nematodes are small roundworms native to the soils that attack the larva of the Small Hive Beetle in the soil reducing the population.
Wintergreen plants planted under and around hives may help to deter Small Hive Beetle infestations.

Essential Oil

Bee Nutrition {this paper is the reason I use small amounts of molasses to provide macronutrients} {this paper is why I add small amounts of sea salt}

Mushroom info

It was a well done presentation.  Thank you William for the free sample you provided us.  It smells wonderful!

Next month speaker will be Danny Brewer , Arkansas State Bee Inspector.

Meeting was adjourned  8:48 p.m.

Next Meeting:  18 February 2021

Location: Hardy Civic Center, 301 Main Street, Hardy AR 72542

Time:  Begins at 6:30 P.M.

The video for this month was facing the back wall on purpose.  Myron is a Mennonite that is not allowed to be filmed.  At times it is hard to hear him, he is soft spoken.  We respect him and his wishes.  I tried to get as much of the meeting otherwise.

See ALL videos of meetings and Events here:  It is still under construction at this time, but a few are uploaded to see.

Jonesboro having Beginning Beekeeper Class on 06 February 2021

. Image may contain: people smiling, people sitting, wedding, meme, living room, plant, flower, outdoor, food and nature, text that says 'Northeast Arkansas Beekeepers Association Presents BEGINNING BEEKEEPING 101 New Date: 02-06-2021 8:30 am am-5:00 pm $20 ASU Reynolds Building 2501 Danner Ave. Jonesboro, AR Pre-Register'

From the UofA Division of Agriculture site:




The queen will be spending a lot of time in the cluster, but a few warm days will lure some workers outside to investigate. When the first spring flowers begin to bloom, they will return with pollen. Fresh pollen will stimulate the queen to begin some limited egg-laying activity. Workers will take cleansing flights on warm days.

Increased activity and brood-rearing will cause the bees to consume a substantial amount of stored honey this month.  Unless an unusually warm and early spring promotes early flowering, their surplus food supplies may be running low.


Check the bees' food supply, and provide emergency feeding if needed. Continue to read up on bees. Attend your local beekeeping association meetings. Finish your workshop chores so that all your hives are ready for spring. On a mild, sunny day with little wind, it may be possible to have a look inside the hive. Don't remove any frames, which may risk chilling the brood, but you can estimate the size of the cluster between the frames. Patties of pollen or artificial pollen substitute can be provided to promote earlier brood production. However, in periods of extended cold temperatures the worker population may not be large enough to incubate a large brood nest. If weather permits inspection, weak colonies (those with less than 2 full frames of bees) will probably not recover adequately and can be united with other colonies. Medicate with Fumidil-B for Nosema, if necessary. Excessive condensation on the inside of the lid may mean ventilation is inadequate.

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