Last week, as we were getting ready to treat our colonies for varroa, Amanda discovered one that had Deformed Wing Virus. It is a particularly heartbreaking disease to find, since the predominant physical issue is that the bees have either shrivelled wings or no wings at all. Watching a wingless bee crawl around on the […]
As a beekeeper, the end of summer and the harkening fall remind me of the approaching B.C. Honey Producers Association fall convention September 25-27 at the Delta Airport Inn in Richmond. I watch the calendar with particular interest and count the days to the start of the three-day event. As associations go, the BCHPA is […]
The deadline for public comment on the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s Risk Assessment on the importation of American package bees has now passed. But that hasn’t stopped the considerable commentary from beekeepers who are weighing in on both sides, who alternately find the CFIA “status quo” decision either specious and based on faulty science, or […]
Canadian beekeepers hoping for quick access to cheaper package bees from the United States have had their hopes dented, if not crushed. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has concluded a new risk assessment report that says Canadian apiculture remains exposed to the potential for medication-resistant varroa mites and American Foulbrood, and infestations of small hive […]
Beekeepers face a dizzying array of pests, diseases and threats to their livestock. We spend an enormous amount of time battling the varroa mite and being on guard for American Foulbrood disease, nosema, small hive beetle and Africanized honey bees. Fortunately in our region of Western Canada we don’t have the last two problems. Yet. […]
The lessons we learn as beekeepers are supposed to help us. I recently made a catastrophic mistake that also cost us a bundle and lost us some very good queens. Like many beekeepers in British Columbia, we take our honey off around the middle of August. Anything the bees collect after that is meant for […]
There’s been another rash of bee deaths in Ontario, where commercial beekeepers are on the ropes with losses of upwards of 85 per cent. The presence of neonicotinoid pesticides in dead bees collected from last year’s die-off triggered both a review by Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency and a more recent bee deaths investigation committee […]
This week we’re heading to a conference on how to manage honey bees without treatment. The question is, can we afford to? And at a time when honey bees and all native pollinators appear to be under grave threat – and as the debate over neonicotinoid pesticides continues to rage, there are legitimate questions about […]
About . . .
Honey Bee Zen Apiaries Ltd and its subsidiary, Swan Valley Honey Ltd., are known for their sustainable beekeeping practices and a growing list of terroir-based niche honeys.
Based in the verdant Creston Valley in B.C.'s Central Kootenay region, we produce award-winning honeys derived from a vast array of forages, including alfalfa, dutch clover, snowberry, thistle, wild fruits, fireweed, sweet clover and more. The land has provided our Swan Valley branded-honey a gentle, delectable, sweetness sought after throughout the province. We supply over 30 retail locations in B.C.
We are committed to working with farmers who respect the land they use and the bees we provide, and we seek out strong and beneficial relationships. We are interested in the science and breeding of bees, the production of honey and hive products, and trying to resolve the challenges bees and their keepers around the world face.
- Picking Blueberries With Sandhill Cranes: A Summer Event July 17, 2016
- Canada’s ban on honey bee imports is folly, says B.C.’s biggest beekeeper March 10, 2012
- Treating bees with oxalic acid; a late-winter mite-killing exercise February 1, 2015
- Battling honey bee chalkbrood an expensive, maddening affair June 9, 2015
- Four apiary sites in B.C.’s Fraser Valley found with small hive beetles September 10, 2015
- Painting New Honey Supers For The Coming Season April 18, 2018
- World Supplier of Nosema Medication Fumagilin-B Shuts Down April 13, 2018
- Alberta Small Hive Beetle find means trouble for B.C. beekeepers July 29, 2017
- New honey in our Swan Valley operations in Creston! July 20, 2017
- New adventures for Honey Bee Zen Apiaries and Swan Valley Honey July 16, 2017
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