President’s Message – July

Greetings Fellow Beekeepers,

How are your bees? This is my fifth year as a beekeeper and I know more and more and less and less. It has been a very challenging season, starting off with the very warm winter, the very wet spring and now a triple digit summer. I am having to adapt what I have learned into what the bees know.

Our next beekeepers meeting will be this Thursday, July 16th, 2015 at 7:00pm at the Salt Lake County building 2001 South State Street, Salt Lake City. We will be in the same room, the south atrium, as the catered dinner was. So plan on coming a little early so that you can sign in at the security desk in the north building and make your way to the south building. Albert Chubak, our WBA Program Director, will be presenting a lesson on laying queens, replacing queens, feeding and honey extraction. If you would like to bring a sample of your honey, Albert will test it for sweetness and water content. We will also be hearing from Stephen Stanko from the Department of Agriculture on mites.

Our upcoming events are the Annual Craft Lake City DIY (do it yourself) Festival on Friday, August 7th and Saturday August 8th, 2015 at the Gallivan Center, 239 South Main Street, Salt Lake City, UT. Our table will be in the new Google Fiber Building. I need volunteers to help man the table both days. The hours of the festival are 5:00pm – 10:00pm on Friday and 12:00 noon – 10:00pm on Saturday. We need to be there to answer questions and explain about the importance of honey bees. There will be some of the small table top observation hive with bees in them to show the public what the inside of a hive looks like.

Then we have the Utah State Fair starting on September 10, 2015 going through to September 20, 2015. I have started a volunteer sign up sheet and will bring it to the meeting. It is 10 days of 3 – four hour shifts for each day. Your pass will get you into the fairground to attend the table in the agriculture building and then you may use your pass for the fair for that day. This is a great opportunity to answer the public’s questions about beekeeping and it is a lot of fun. This is the first time that the fair will go for 10 days instead of 7. I will need all the help that I can get.

Denise Hunsaker

President Wasatch Beekeepers


A big THANK YOU to our President, Denise Hunsaker and all others who assisted in organizing and hosting our first ever catered Summer BBQ held yesterday evening!  It was a great time to mix, mingle, enjoy the association of fellow beekeepers, and eat some fantastic Famous Dave’s and specialty dessert dishes from our members!  Jerry Lynn — you and your wife are going to have to bring another cobbler to our next meeting as the one you cooked up must have been gone is less than 5 minutes!!!

WBA Logo!
group 1

The Spread!table of food

Mmmmmm BBQ!plate of food

Member Desserts — all of them were delicious!

(notice Jerry Lynn’s empty Dutch oven!)member desserts

Beehive Surprise Cake!beehive cake

Owen auctioning some weed…Owen auctioning weed

Wasatch Beekeepers Association Members!group picture

Al demonstrating how to open one’s mouth… Al with dinner plate





The classroom is located in the south building of the Salt Lake
County Government campus on the main level in the southeast



President’s Message May 2015

Wasatch Beekeepers Association
President’s Message May 2015

Greetings to all beekeepers whether you have been doing this for one season or many. Welcome to one of my most engaging passions. This is my fifth season as a beekeeper and my fourth year for being a member of the Wasatch Beekeepers Association. Every year the information about beekeeping gets better and better and every year it stays the same. I start off the beekeeping season in January answering questions about beekeeping so that the public might be made aware of why the honey bees are so important to us all.

This Saturday, June 6th, 2015 is the Honey Bee Festival at the Sorenson Multicultural Center, 855 West California Ave, SLC 84104 from 11:00am-3:00pm. There will be a table representing the Wasatch Beekeepers Association, so plan on coming by and visiting. Then for our June meeting on Thursday, June 18, 2015 we will be having our first indoor catered BBQ. The location of the BBQ will announced. Members that didn’t sign up at the May meeting will still be able to place their RSVP’s on Facebook or on the WBA web-site, If you would rather call me, I am taking names over the phone as well.

You have probably noticed that your hives have come to life with the warm weather finally getting here. I have noticed that our hives are full of fresh and capped larvae and no eggs. If you haven’t been into your hives, now is a good time to look for ‘swarm cells’. If you don’t know how, call your mentor. The Wasatch Beekeepers Association is here to help the new beekeepers and to encourage the seasoned beekeepers to be available to answer questions.

We are making plans for the Utah State Fair that will be held September 10-20, 2015. The fair is our most expansive event of the year. This is where we get to be present for hundreds of fair going participants that will have questions about honey bees and beekeeping. Since the Wasatch Beekeepers is sponsoring the booth, we will be in charge of set-out, hand-outs and volunteers. There will be 4 hours shifts everyday that the fair is open. So as a member of the WBA plan on being called to volunteer. We won’t be doing all the shifts ourselves, the other beekeeping clubs will be invited as well.

Wasatch Beekeepers Association Meeting
May 21, 2015
Meeting began 7:05 p.m.
Conducting: Denise Hunsaker
Items: Minutes amended and accepted
Account balance of association is $3493.86. Income from membership dues and auctions. Brent Carlisle will present a more structured disclosure at the next meeting.
Reminder of different handouts location at table.
List passed around for those who wish to help with swarm calls. Calls need to have a quick response time.
We would like to have a T shirt for the association. Several design ideas were passed around for membership to offer opinions.
We are holding a BBQ dinner instead of our next meeting. We are looking for a place to hold the BBQ. We will be using Famous Dave’s catering service and a list was passed around to sign up for the dinner. If you are interested in attending, please let Denise know.
Apiary visits will be held in July. The association membership will be divided according to zip code with several apiaries to be visited.
Dana Yetton: Mentorship program is going well. By now you should have heard from your mentor, please give talk with Dana. A lot of information is on the WBA FaceBook page.
Some questions can also be answered by a phone call.
Auction held: Several items were auctioned and money goes into our fund.

Program: Christopher Rodesch, Salt Lake County Apiary Inspector presented
“Honeybee Health Issues” – Diseases & Inspections
American Foulbrood Going Forward – Inspections
*Hive and equipment hygiene prevents spread of spores
*Just because your hives are well maintained
* Terramycin is used as a preventive but resistance has developed
*Tylosis tartrate may be an alternative
*Phage therapy
*Burn everything, don’t share tools, etc. Don’t abandon hives
30% to 60% of Foulbrood is resistant to antibiotics. Think about not going treatment free. High probability that bees were treated before you bought the bees.
What is American Foulbrood?
*Gram positive spore forming bacteria (palnobacillus larvae)
*Infects young bees younger than 3 days
*Transmitted by contact with contaminated equipment
Testing Options for American Foulbrood
Best way is using an American Foulbrood Diagnostic Kit which sells for $15.00 or you can use the Holtz Milk Test.

Pros and Cons of Phage Therapy
pros cons
Remains active and is self replicating Won’t rescue hives with too large of spore load
Adapts to new strains Time consuming prophylactic?
Relatively cheap Very specific – strain specific
Very specific – strain specific
Proper Hive Inspection
*Management and hive health
*Strong genetics
*Feeding and nutrition
*Seasonal progress, are you keeping up with the Jones
A second brood box?
Once comb is drawn out on 6 – 8 frames in the first box. Too much cold air space is too hard to defend/heat. When to super?
Once two brood boxes are 7 to 8 frames full each
Queen excluder is of limited value in most cases
Assessing the future population–routine inspections checklist:
* worker pattern, how many frames are covered?
*brood pattern, how spotty and extensive are the capped brood?
*dead spots, signs of chill brood, dead pupa or mold?
*food stores, pollen and honey?
*is there enough open spaces for new brood and more honey storage?
*Queen? or signs that she was recently there? Eggs mean she was on a frame within the past 3 days
*Don’t work through the whole hive unless there is a problem, stop when you find the queen or better yet, eggs. Take care in returning the queen to the hive. Beekeeping is inherently a local activity like gardening.
You can learn a lot on the internet but real (not virtual) local people are your best resource.

Meeting adjourned at 8:23 pm.
There were 59 people in attendance.
Thank You,

Denise B. Hunsaker