When is It Time to Harvest Honey?

For me, in my local climate, I know it’s about time to harvest honey when the fireweed has gone to seed…

…when the bees are spitting out drone pupae…

…like in this video (keeping in mind that this happens mostly in colonies with foundationless frames in the brood nest, and it doesn’t always happen)…

…when the weather seems to have finally shifted into cold fall temperatures…

These temperatures aren’t too cold, but we’re getting there, and when it drops, it drops fast.

…when the goldenrod is beginning to dry up (because goldenod is the main source of nectar for my bees in late summer)…

…and basically when the honey boxes are full of honey. All of the above, except for maybe the last one, are true for me at the moment. I’ll probably add escape boards this weekend in preparation for harvesting honey next weekend.

Postscript (September 22nd, 2020):  I nailed it with this one.  All of these cues are dead on the money.  Next year, I’ll use the fireweed seeds as the first cue to get ready for the honey harvest and then keep on eye on the rest.

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