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Pennsylvania State
Beekeepers Association

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Obituary

James "Jim" D. Aucker passed away August 26th. Jim was a PSBA member and a founding member of The Beekeepers of the Susquehanna Valley. Read the obituary.

Your computer skills are needed!

PSBA had made the decision to transition to an online membership management software to make it easier for our members to check, update, and renew their memberships. Most of these systems would also offer online event registration and a store front for the sale of PSBA items. Our plans were derailed by a combination of COVID restrictions and finding that membership management software systems were not as easily implemented and managed as the advertisements indicated. We are looking for an individual willing to establish and maintain an online membership management system for the PSBA. We are not set on any particular software at this time and whomever volunteers for this role would have significant input to selecting the software. If the selected software supports it, there could be a longer term goal of transitioning our website to the system. If you have the skills and are interested in volunteering to help, please contact Bob Tatro at PSBASecretary@gmail.com.

Summer Meeting/Picnic Survey

We held the 2021 PSBA Summer Meeting and Picnic back in July and had about 60 people participate. The good news is that 60 people attending was an increase from past years. The bad news is that 60 people attending was an increase from past years. In an attempt to better serve our membership, "we" (Ken Hoover did all the real work) have created a survey to try to identify why more people don't attend and what we can change to offer a program that more people would want to attend. Whether you attended or not, please take a few minutes to complete this survey. Finding out people are just not interested in attending is just as valuable as finding out what we can change to make people want to attend.

Take The Survey!

2021 Summer Picnic Photos

Picnic Photos   (Photos by Ken Hoover)
Picnic Photos  (Photos by Mark Gingrich)

Candidates wanted for 2022 Honey Queen and Princess

The Pennsylvania Honey Queen Program is currently seeking candidates for the 2022 Honey Queen and Princess. Candidate must be a single young woman, between the ages of 18-24 as of November 1st, who is a resident of Pennsylvania. It is not necessary that the candidate come from a beekeeping background. Further qualifications and details on our Honey Queen Application Form.

PSBA Winter Loss Survey

The survey is now completed; thanks to those who participated. View results

Beekeeper of the Year Award Nominations

PSBA is currently accepting nominations for the Beekeeper of the Year Award which is presented at the fall conference.   Details

PA State Apiary Inspection

The 2021 PA State Apiary Inspection season has begun. Find your local inspector by clicking on your county on our map. The entire list of local inspector's names and contact information is also available on that same page.

Spotted Lanternfly Area Expanded Again

The Spotted Lanternfly quarantine area has once again been expanded. Details at the PDA website.

Further information for beekeepers and residents:

FieldWatch Program

FieldWatch is a free and voluntary online mapping tool that specialty crop growers and beekeepers can use to map the locations of their crops/hives. Pesticide applicators can use this to see the crops and hives near their application sites and plan accordingly. It is being offered in PA as a collaboration between the PA Dept. of Agriculture and Penn State Extension.   Details

Penn State Research Articles

Several new research articles are linked from our Research page, including one that references our annual Winter Loss Survey data.

Tribute for Ruth Keeney

YouTube link for the Ruth Keeney Remembrance

PA State Apiary Inspection - COVID-19 GUIDANCE: Interstate Transportation of Bees

Please read this informational document from the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture regarding the Interstate Transportation of Bees, Apiary Registrations and Permits, and inspections.

How to Keep Bees During COVID-19

Article by Robyn Underwood and Margarita López-Uribe, Department of Entomology, Penn State University.

López-Uribe Lab: Beekeeping Resources at Penn State

Spring is approaching. Here are some useful links that may be helpful to beekeepers everywhere. If your a beginner, get started with 'Beekeeping, Where to Begin' (https://lopezuribelab.com/beekeeping-where-to-begin/). If you will be installing bee packages this spring, here is a video detailing a step-by-step installation method (https://lopezuribelab.com/package-bee-installation/). If you have overwintered colonies, enjoy our new video that provides an overview of swarming biology and illustrates a step-by-step method to split a colony (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VjrAGPZu-Ck&feature=youtu.be). Here are some handy articles including Varroa Mite Monitoring Tools (https://lopezuribelab.com/varroa-mite-monitoring/) and Oxalic Acid treatments (https://lopezuribelab.com/oxalic-acid-treatment-protocols/).

   Katy Ciola Evans

2020 Pennsylvania Honey Queen Brochures


Queen Lucy Winn's 2020 Pennsylvania Honey Queen Brochures are now available. A $10 donation for a pack of 100 brochures is requested. You can purchase brochures by contacting the representative in your area listed below or you may print them from this pdf file if you prefer.

Queen Honey Bee Development

"The queen is the most important individual in a colony. She is the only bee capable of producing workers and tens of thousands of workers are required for strong colonies." Read the full article from PennState Extension: An Introduction to Queen Honey Bee Development. A pdf version is also available.

Honeybee Viruses

Penn State Extension has posted an article with information on "Viruses in Honey Bees".

PSBA Helping Honey Bees Brochures

The 2020 Pennsylvania State Beekeepers Helping Honey Bees Brochures are available. A $10 donation/100 is requested (donations would be paid to Treasurer). To purchase brochures contact: Charlie Vorisek. Or you may print them from the pdf file, if you prefer.

2020 Pennsylvania Honey Queen Chosen

Lucy Winn was selected as the 2020 Pennsylvania Honey Queen. Congratulations, Lucy!   

The Pennsylvania Honey Queen Program may be able to provide a speaker for your event. See details and contact information on our Honey Queen page.

Aaron Fisher selected as 2019 Beekeeper of the Year

The 2019 Beekeeper of the Year award was presented to Aaron Fisher at the PSBA fall conference.

Beekeepers in Pittsburgh - AFB Information

Updated 8-29-19
Updated Letter to Beekeepers in Pittsburgh (by Karen Roccasecca)  
Neighborhood map of Pittsburgh

For all beekeepers:
Updated 10-18-19 Parasitic Mite Syndrome
Updated 10-18-19 Preventing the Spread of American Foulbrood
Updated 10-18-19 Differences Between AFB-EFB-PMS
Updated 8-29-19 American Foulbrood Information (by Penn State University)
Updated 7-15-19 American Foulbrood Information
American Foulbrood Information (by Meghan Milbrath)

For the health and safety of all of our honeybees, it is important that your hives be registered. It is also required by state law. Mail-In Registration Form   Online Registration

Beescape

Beescape provides a tool for beekeepers, gardeners, growers and land managers to assess the quality of their landscapes for supporting managed honey bees and wild bees." (Beescape is a partnership of the Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State University, Dickinson College, Purdue University, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, University of Minnesota, and University of California, Davis.)    Visit Beescape.

Managing Varroa Mites

A Varroa Management Decision Tool is available at the Honey Bee Health Coalition website.

Summer Picnic Photos

Picnic Photos   (Photos by Charlie Vorisek)

López-Uribe Lab: Managing Honeybees

Using an evidence-based approach to manage honey bees in light of wild bee declines

Model Beekeeping Ordinance

We now have a PA Model Beekeeping Ordinance available to view/download.

Pollen Foraging Study

A pollen foraging study has been completed in West Virignia through a Northeast SARE farmer grant endeavoring to determine which plants were being foraged through the months of July through October and which plants were contributing the most to the bees' diet. They looked at pollen collected by honey bees in five West Virginia locations, and pollen collected in one of the locations for three consecutive years. Many of the plants common in West Virginia are also common in parts of Pennsylvania. The final report is available on the Northeast SARE website.

Dr. Samuel Ramsey's varroa research

Dr. Samuel Ramsey spoke at our 2018 fall conference. View the video he did on the same subject for the Danish Beekeeper's Association. Dr. Ramsey previously won the international Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition for his thesis 'Varroa destructor: The Curious Case of the Bee Mite's Bite' (Video introduces new ideas on varroa destructor).

Tracking the Health of Feral Bees in PA

"Since 2016 the López-Uribe lab has been leading a citizen science project that aims to map and characterize the health status of feral bees across Pennsylvania." Read their full article.

The Pennsylvania Pollinator Protection Plan


Download video (Right-click and choose 'Save link/target as' if your browser doesn't default to downloading file)
View static version of video as pdf

The Pennsylvania Pollinator Protection Plan (P4) was developed with input from 36 individuals representing 28 state and national organizations and stakeholder groups. It summarizes the current state of pollinators in Pennsylvania, and provides recommendations for best practices and resources to support and expand pollinator populations. There is an opportunity for comments at the end. Comments will be accepted until Dec 15th. The document is fluid and will be reviewed and updated annually. The final chapter will be written based on comments that will help guide how it may be published and implemented.
Details at the Center for Pollinator Research

PSBA Bee Friendly Program

Bee Friendly PA is a new initiative from the Pennsylvania State Beekeeping Association (PSBA) that recognizes bee-friendly communities across the state: those that encourage beekeeping as well provide hospitable habitats and pollinator-friendly pest management practices.

Varroa Videos

The Honeybee Health Coalition has posted a series of videos to help beekeepers combat varroa.

"Why did my honey bees die?"

Wondering what happened? Read the article at beeinformed.org

Sentinel Apiary Project

Bee Informed Partnership is looking for beekeeping groups from across the country who manage 8 or more colonies and are interested to participate in their Sentinel Apiary Project. If you chose to participate, your club will receive monthly disease reports of Nosema and Varroa levels as well as colony health monitoring with hive scales. Data collected can be shared among those in your group, as your Sentinel Apiary will represent beekeeping conditions specific to your region. All personal data collected will remain confidential; however hive scale and disease data from Sentinel apiaries will be on a shared, public website. Subsidies available for the cost of hive scales for qualifying groups. Details and application available at beeinformed.org.

Bee Behavior Expert Studies Honeybee Swarms

Read the Smithsonian article about Thomas Seeley: "The Secret Life of Bees".

Pesticide Information

A list of Pesticide descriptions and information is available on our Current Research page.

Protecting Honey Bees from Chemical Pesticides

Documents and Brochures Available in PDF Format

(see the 'Publication Quick Links' below for even more...)

Interested in joining PSBA?

For a list of membership benefits and a form to join the association, see our Membership page.

Publication Quick Links

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