Learn and conduct proper hive maintenance
Healthy honey bee hives require constant monitoring, cleaning, and an easily accessible food source.
- Setting and following a consistent hive inspection schedule is important to recognizing changes or threats to your honey bee colonies, so that you can take action to keep your colonies thriving.
- Always insure that there is adequate and accessible food, nutrition and clean water available for your honey bees. Depending on your hive location, providing food supplements or installing a water source may be necessary.
- Inspect for any pests or diseases attacking your hives. Take steps to mitigate if necessary, including hive and support structural repairs or modifications.
- Pay attention to bee colony behavior and take steps to re-queen if or when you see an increase in agitation or defensive levels. Plan to re-queen annually to limit your colonies becoming Africanized.
- Consider bee colony expansion and be prepared to start new hives or make other arrangements to manage expanding colonies before they swarm.
- Be vigilant about fire safety. Maintain the space surrounding your hives clean and clear of plants, weeds and grasses, debris and other items that may ignite and spread a fire.