Whidbey Island Washington Beekeeping & Honeybees - Lavender Honey - Green Road Farm - Tim Walsh


…A few helpful words

  • Apiary
    Group of bee colonies in one location (bee yard).
  • Apiculture
    The science and art of studying and using honey bees for man’s benefit.
  • Apis
    Latin for Bee
  • Beeswax
    Wax secreted from glands on the underside of bee abdomens, then molded to form honeycomb.
  • Brood
    Immature or developing stages of bees; includes eggs, larvae (unsealed brood) and pupae (sealed brood).
  • Brood chamber
    The area of the hive where the brood is reared; usually the lowermost hive bodies; contains brood comb.
  • Brood nest
    Area of hive where bees are densely clustered and brood is reared.
  • Cerana
    Wax Maker
  • Colony
    An entire honey bee family or social unit living together in a hive or other shelter.
  • Comb
    A beeswax structure composed of two layers of horizontal cells sharing their bases, usually within a wooden frame in a hive. The words “comb” and “frame” are often used interchangeably; for example, a frame of brood, a comb of brood.
  • Comb foundation
    A sheet of beeswax embossed on each side with the cell pattern.
  • Comb honey
    Honey in the sealed comb in which it was produced. It is also called section comb honey when produced in thin wooden frames (sections) and comb honey when produced in shallow frames.
  • Draw
    To shape and build, as to draw comb from a sheet of foundation.
  • Drones
    Drones are the male bees. They have larger bodies and eyes than the females and cannot sting you. Their only objective is to mate with a virgin queen. Drones live around 90 days.
  • Dysentery
    A malady of adult bees marked by an accumulation of excess feces or waste products, and by their release in and near the hive.
  • Foragers
    See Worker bee.
  • Foulbrood
    A general name for infectious diseases of immature bees that cause them to die and their remains to smell bad. The term most often refers to American foulbrood.
  • Frame
    A wooden rectangle that surrounds the comb and hangs in the hive. It may be called Hoffman, Langstroth or self-spacing because of differences in size and widened end-bars that provide a bee space between the combs.
  • Hive body
    A single wooden rim or shell that holds a set of frames. When used for the brood nest, it is called a brood chamber; when used above the brood nest for honey storage, it is called a super. It may be of various sizes and adapted for comb honey sections.
  • Honey flow
    Period when bees are collecting nectar in plentiful amounts from plants.
  • House bee
    A young worker bee, one day to two weeks old, that works only in the hive.
  • Langstroth hive
    A hive with movable frames. The bee space around the frames allows you to move the frames. It was invented by L. L. Langstroth.
  • Melifera
    Latin for Bearer of Honey
  • Microsporidium – Fungal, single-cell parasite
  • Nosema
    Latin for Infectios, Single cell agent
  • Nosema disease
    An infectious disease of adult bees caused by a protozoan, Nosema apis.
  • Package bees
    Two to 4 pounds of worker bees, usually with a queen, in screen-sided wooden cage with a can of sugar syrup for food.
  • Paradichlorobenzene (PDB)
    A white crystalline substance used to fumigate combs and repel wax moths.
  • Pollen
    Male reproductive cells of flowers collected and used by bees as food for rearing their young. It is the protein part of the diet. Frequently called bee bread when stored in cells in the colony.
  • Pollen substitute
    Mixture of water, sugar and other material, such as soy flour or brewer’s yeast, used for bee feed.
  • Propolis
    Propolis is a resinous mixture that Bees collect from tree buds, sap flows, or other botanical sources. It is used as a sealant for unwanted open spaces in the hive, reinforce the structural stability of the hive, reduce vibration, make the hive more defensible by sealing alternate entrances, prevent diseases and parasites from entering the hive, prevent putrefaction within the hive. Propolis is used as a component of Italian varnish and was reportedly used by Stradivari.
  • Queen Bee
    Sexually developed female bee. The mother of all bees in the colony. She has a stinger but no barb and uses it to fight off Queens that hatch in her hive.
  • Rendering wax
    Melting old combs and wax cappings and removing refuse to partially refine the beeswax. May be put through a wax press.
  • Scutella
    Latin for Armed!
  • Super
    A hive body used for honey storage above the brood chambers of a hive.
  • Swarm
    A group of worker bees and a queen (usually the old one) that leave the hive to establish a new colony; a word formerly used to describe a hive or colony of bees.
  • Telescoping cover
    A hive cover, used with an inner cover, that extends downward several inches on all four sides of a hive.
  • Uniting
    Combining one honey bee colony with another.
  • Varroa
    Named for Marcus Terentius Varro Lucullus, A very busy politico of ancient Rome.
  • Wax Moths
    Are a notorious pest of beekeeping equipment. Adult moths lay eggs near wax combs, then their larvae hatch and begin burrowing through the combs to eat debris in the cells. Moth larvae ruin combs and plaster them with webbing and feces. Honey bees are usually very good at protecting their colonies from moth larvae. If moth damage is found in a colony, there was some other problem (usually queen loss) that weakened the colony first. Moth damage is most common in stored supers of comb. Protect stored supers by stacking them no higher than five hive bodies. Tape shut all cracks, put paradichlorobenzene crystals at the top of the stack and cover the stack with a lid. Replenish the crystals as they evaporate.
  • Wired foundation
    Comb foundation with vertical wires embedded in it for added strength.
  • Wiring
    Installing tinned wire in frames as support for combs.
  • Worker Bee
    Worker bees are all female but do not lay fertile eggs. The worker bee will work in the hive until she is around 21 days old. Then, she will grow wings and begin foraging for nectar, water, pollen and propolis. Her lifespan is 30 days.




November 2017
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