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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    El Cerrito, CA, USA
    Posts
    50

    Default Fall nectar in the bay area

    Hi, anyone more experienced than me (and that means almost everyone on this site) have any idea what kind of nectar flow to expect in late summer and fall in the coastal bay area (Berkeley/San francisco)? I've got a weakish hive and am wondering how much I'm going to have to be feeding them in the next couple of months. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Los Altos, CA
    Posts
    121

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    I'm just a little South of you. There's still a nectar flow in the South Bay but I noticed that some blooms just happened but dried and died really fast this year. But still have stuff blooming. Ivy flowers looks like it's about to pop in my area. But after that it could be dry until the Eucalyptus bloom which can occur as early as Nov for some early bloomer.

    Also, note that some of my hives are still drawing new wax while others are already back filling brood area with nectar to prepare for Fall/Winter.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2,402

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    Flow dries up here in SF in September and the Eucalyptus starts in mid November thru to February.
    President, San Francisco Beekeepers Association
    www.habitatforhoneybees.org

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    El Sobrante, California, USA
    Posts
    148

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    Thanks, Charlie, been wondering when I should be extracting....soon/now!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,213

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    Charlie. Out of curiosity, does Eucalyptus provide you with a surplus, or just keep things ticking over?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2,402

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    Adrian,

    Eucalyptus provided a surplus last winter and I'm hoping for the same this winter. The only thing I worry about is them being honey bound in early spring and they swarm. I had to harvest several times, once in February and again in late March to make sure they don't swarm in April.

    I know, I know, it's a nice problem to have but remember I have to deal with all this fog during the summer when the girls don't get out as much to forage compared to other locations.
    President, San Francisco Beekeepers Association
    www.habitatforhoneybees.org

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2,402

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    Disclaimer:

    My location may not be the same as others near SF due to the fact that my bees are at Golden Gate Park!
    President, San Francisco Beekeepers Association
    www.habitatforhoneybees.org

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    El Cerrito, CA, USA
    Posts
    50

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    So Charlie, when does your queen stop laying brood, if she does? I'm curious how big a population there'll be in the hive in Nov/Dec... and how much surplus they'll need to get through our (admittedly feeble) winters.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2,402

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    I really don't know if they ever stop laying during our winters here. I usually don't go into any of them from about December to February except to extract supers. That's a good question though, I'll look in the brood boxes for eggs this winter to see of there are any. The populations went down to two medium brood boxes last year for all of them so it's consistent.
    President, San Francisco Beekeepers Association
    www.habitatforhoneybees.org

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    El Cerrito, CA, USA
    Posts
    50

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    Interesting.... so that means those winter/early spring treatments with things like oxalic acid (assuming this is something one does) when the brood is absent may not really be an option for mite reduction.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Pacifica California, San Mateo County
    Posts
    95

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    Here in Pacifica, I have year around brood in the hives.
    May be in December there is a short time without brood.
    So I am not 100% sure.
    I usually don't open the hives in December due to colder whether
    but if we have a nice warm day I might have a quick look.

    This year I pulled honey in the beginning of March because they were filling up.

    Cheers
    Stefan

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,163

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    Last December in Concord one of my hives raised a new queen, she & her mother remained in the hive together until I removed them both in April.
    Over x-mas holiday I got to see her return from mating flights around noon 3 days in a row. The loud noise of drones entering the hive caught my attention.
    Dan

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,953

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    There are several eucalyptuses blooming now, the red ficifolia being one. I also see two white blossom types blooming. Also toyon, fennel, texas and japanese privet, lagerstromnia, golden chain tree, some citrus and a lot of perennial flowers. Eucalyptus globulus often starts after Halloween. I am not seeing much late incoming nectar from anything this year. The flow seems to have stopped early in most hives mid May pretty hard. I just fed today a swarm trapped on 6/15 and left in a nuc box until yesterday, plenty of brood, a trace of incoming nectar but not any capped honey. Your location and results might vary.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2,402

    Default Re: Fall nectar in the bay area

    Quote Originally Posted by jlsheehan View Post
    Interesting.... so that means those winter/early spring treatments with things like oxalic acid (assuming this is something one does) when the brood is absent may not really be an option for mite reduction.
    Randy Oliver came out to a club meeting last year and said if your going to treat, do it before August 15th. That seems to be the treatment time frame deadline to prevent major mite infestation in the fall. Mind you that's local advice only.
    President, San Francisco Beekeepers Association
    www.habitatforhoneybees.org

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