Here’s the Latest From HABA

What an impressive turnout for the April meeting! We appreciate your understanding as we scrambled to accommodate more than twice the attendees we were expecting and a huge thanks to our presenters for going through their messages twice. Image

Photo is of queen cells in an incubator. 

May 15 is our next meeting and we’ll be discussing Queen Rearing with Mike Risk. Mike is currently the President of the Center of Michigan Beekeepers club and has been a hobbyist and sideline beekeeper for 32 years. Mike’s interest in beekeeping began when he discovered bees in the walls of a farmhouse he bought in Eaton County all those years ago. These days he concentrates his efforts on raising queens which are acclimated to the Michigan climate and disease resistant to today’s pests and maladies plaguing honey bees. Mike speaks and teaches at various venues about the plight of the honey bee. His favorite engagements are at his grandchildren’s classes where he takes his observation hive and talks to the children about the value of honey bees as pollinators. Mike and his wife Sidney live on a small farm near Laingsburg, MI where they have large gardens, fruit trees and chickens, raise bees and sell honey.

Mike recently shared, “I will try to put a program together that will help educate the newer beekeepers and also try to give the more experienced beekeepers a few things to think about.  You really can’t teach someone to rear queens in one hour but can do an overview and explore the advantages, techniques, and benefits to raising local queens and some of the issues they may run into.”

We’ll be meeting at the GVSU – Meijer Campus (515 S. Waverly Road, Holland) at 7 PM in the atrium. Following Mike’s presentation you’ll have the opportunity to remain for Q & A time with Mike or go to another room to discuss adding supers and other general beekeeping topics.

Don Lam is seeking volunteers to assist in package installation demonstrations. The dates are April 23, May 2, and May 10. Contact Don at 616-886-1116 if you are available.

Interested in mentoring? Mary lives on the north side of Holland and would like to shadow someone in their apiary to learn more about beekeeping. Email me if you’re willing and I’ll forward your message.

Swarm List – Here are the names I have so far:

Doug and Sandy Lindhout, John F. Gill, Chuck Bauer, Greg Willis, Ted Nelson, Al Palmer, Amber Snyder, Dan Kievit, Don Rewa, Linda Bradley, Wilbur Sewall, Ken Hoekstra, Travis Meier, Carlean Ericksen, Dale Spinner, Chris Walkup, Jim Zoerner, Harv De Ridder, and Gary Manning

If you’d like your name added to the swarm list on our new website, please email me your name, phone, and counties you’re willing to cover.

Lastly, here is information concerning an undertaking called Bees in Italy where Renee Ricciardi is combining her love of beekeeping and photography to seek information on improving honeybee health.

See you soon,


A Reminder, an Inquiry and the Northern Bee Network

Hope to see you at the meeting tomorrow night!  

Thursday, April 10, 7 PM at GVSU – Meijer Campus, 515 S. Waverly Road, Holland.  

Please bring along any Bee Culture magazines you’ve borrowed at prior meetings and we’ll have other issues for you to peruse.

A club member will soon be traveling to Costa Rica for undergraduate beekeeping research and is wondering if you might know anyone there with bees?  Email me any connections or information you may have and I’ll pass it along.

Here’s a link sharing details concerning the Northern Bee Network.  Meghan Milbrath, who is quoted in the article, is scheduled to speak at our October meeting.

See you tomorrow,


April 10 Meeting, Carpool Request, and More

Thursday, April 10 — It’s almost time for our first regular meeting of 2014! We will be discussing swarm control–both preventing and catching, plus various hive splitting methods. Join us at the GVSU – Meijer Campus (515 S. Waverly Road, Holland) at 7PM. The HABA board will be meeting prior at 6PM and club members are welcome. Hope to see you there!

Grand Rapids Carpool — Jamie is wondering if those in the Grand Rapids area would consider riding together to HABA meetings. Email me if you are interested and I’ll pass along contact information.

Here are some links you may want to check out this weekend:

10 Surprising Facts About Honeybees

Bees Capable of Learning Feats with Tasty Prize in Sight

Open Source Beehives Has an Interesting Project in Progress

Don Lam on WZZM


My family and I recently had the opportunity to visit Randy in Florida where he was assisting a fellow beekeeper and friend, Steve Cantu, of Cantu Apiaries. We were graciously welcomed to his fine facility and had a wonderful visit. The peek into beekeeping on a commercial level was very interesting and the buzzing honeybees were lovely to witness after our long winter.  We were even given a chance to sample almond honey! (I wouldn’t recommend it – LOL)

See you Thursday!

WOOD-TV Honeybee Report and a Pollination Program

Don Lam was recently interviewed concerning how area bees fared our long winter.  You can check out the story here.  How are your bees?  Feel free to share your personal experience in the comments!  

The deadline is fast approaching to participate in a program developed to improve pollinator health.  You can find out more details here.


Carpool Request

Lenny is moving to Ludington in June and is interested in attending HABA events.  If you would consider carpooling, contact me and I’ll pass along his information.



HABA Schedule and Swarm List Info

Spring is right around the corner and it’s time to mark your calendars for upcoming HABA events!

The board has been working hard to establish the schedule for 2014 and will be sharing more details as they are confirmed.  Their goal is to offer a broad range of topics that will benefit both new and experienced beekeepers and extend the opportunity to exchange ideas and inquiries with other club members.  


2014 Holland Area Beekeepers Association Meeting Schedule


April 10  Swarm Control — Preventing & Catching, How to Split a Hive

May 15  Queen Rearing  —  Adding Supers

June 12  Disease Identification 

July 10  Solar Wax Melting  —  Beekeeping Gadgets  —  Apiary Record Keeping  —  Round Table Discussions

August 2  Picnic —  Beekeeping Garage Sale  —  Extraction Demonstration  (To be held south of Grandville)

August 7  Products of the Hive

September 11  Winter Preparations  —  Candy Boards

October 9  The Northern Bees Network

November 13  Bee Breeds

December 11  Mead Making & Holiday Cheers


All meetings, unless noted otherwise, will be held at the GVSU – Meijer Campus — 7 PM 

(515 S. Waverly Road, Holland)

Each meeting will be preceded by a board meeting at 6 PM and all club members are welcome to attend.


April 23, May 2, and May 10 Don Lam will be offering package installation demonstrations at his home.  (882 West 26th Street, Holland, MI 49423)


Progress on the new website is moving forward and we’d like to update our swarm removal list.  If you are interested in being included (or remaining) on the list please email me the following information:  

  1. County or counties you are willing to cover
  2. Name
  3. Phone Number (including area code)



Fox 17 – What’s Really in Your Honey



In case you missed it–here’s a link to the story on FOX 17 What’s Really in Your Honey.  

You can also read more about Dr. Vaughn Bryant’s research here.


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