One of our honey bee hives we lost at Richmond Country Farms in 2015 after the grower improperly used a neonicotinoid pesticide, Clothianidin (trade name Clutch) on nearby strawberries. The Pest Management Regulatory Agency investigated and found the grower at fault. It subsequently banned the use of Clutch on strawberries. Jeff Lee photo.

Canada Bans Neonicotinoid Pesticides On Most Foods – Finally

Health Canada, after seven long years of study, has finally concluded what a lot of other governments, including all of Europe, have already decided: neonicotinoid pesticides aren’t good for bees and pollinators. Having been the victims of a callous spraying incident by a Richmond farmer, who killed a lot of our bees, we could have […]

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Stacked in offset directions these freshly-painted supers won't stick to each other very easily. Jeff Lee photo

Painting New Honey Supers For The Coming Season

It is barely spring here in the Creston Valley, and we’re just gearing up to go into pollination in the cherry orchards for which this place is famous. As I’d previously reported, we bought Swan Valley Honey last July and made the consequential leap of moving from the Vancouver area to Creston. As we wait […]

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Letter from Medivet Pharmaceuticals Ltd. Indicating it is ceasing production of Fumagilin-B and shutting operations.

World Supplier of Nosema Medication Fumagilin-B Shuts Down

Beekeepers have an increasingly difficult time keeping their bees healthy. Whether it is mites, a stunning array of viruses, small hive beetle or the two versions nosema, Nosema apis and its more virulent cousin, Nosema ceranae, there seems no end of ways for bees to get sick and die. The Canadian and U.S. governments recently […]

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Small Hive Beetle larvae infecting a honey comb. Photo courtesy of OMAFRA.

Alberta Small Hive Beetle find means trouble for B.C. beekeepers

Small Hive Beetle, a nasty little pest that B.C. has already had a small taste of, has raised its ugly head in Alberta. And, as seems to be the case so often these days, it is as a result of hitching a ride with an unsuspecting beekeeper. The situation in this case is much more […]

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The first box of honey pulled from our new Swann Valley Honey Ltd. operations. Amanda Goodman Lee and Jason Crumback.

New honey in our Swan Valley operations in Creston!

It’s that time. We’re pulling the first honey of the season off our new yards in Creston and getting it bottled for delivery to waiting customers. This week is an important one for us: we’re still in the midst of moving to Creston and are juggling two operations at Swan Valley Honey and at Honey […]

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Jeff & Amanda. Photo courtesy of Natasha Asselstine.

New adventures for Honey Bee Zen Apiaries and Swan Valley Honey

Honey Bee Zen Apiaries Ltd. has bought Swan Valley Honey, the primary producer of honey for the Kootenays. We’ll be moving to Creston this summer and will continue producing the products both companies are known for.

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Winners of the Amber class in the American Beekeeping Federation's Honey Show at the 2017 North American Beekeeping Conference: Timmie Melancon of Gueydon, Louisiana (first, in centre); Karen Belli, of Wadsworth, Illinois (second, on right) and Amanda, third, on left.

A Canadian honey goes to the North American Beekeeping Show

Amanda and I just came back from the North American Beekeeping Conference in Galveston, Texas, the annual confluence of the brightest minds and most wilful beekeepers you can imagine. This is the time of the year when beekeepers tend to charge up their minds; for the most part the bees are in bed for the […]

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A closeup of a sweat bee, Halictus ligatus, that has collected pollen. Photo credit: United States Geological Survey

If you are a bee, how the New York Times sees you

As a journalist I have been a fan of the New York Times for a long time. As a beekeeper, I have another reason to like them. Joanna Klein’s interesting take this week on explaining the life of a bee breaks a few journalist conventions. One, of course, is writing in the second person. But […]

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