February 2013

OCBA meeting minutes-February 14, 2013  7:00 pm

  1. Geneva called the meeting to order.   She called on Robert Parrish to show off his first place blue ribbon from the October State Fair.  Robert won in a very competitive section for amber extracted, the most popular entry for honey!  She announced that she will print name tags for those without.
  2. Dick pointed out membership cards for folks who have renewed and encouraged all to get their forms completed and their money in.  If renewed online through the OCBA link, the card is mailed to Dick.
  3. ‘Lizabeth shared E.B.White’s “Song of the Honey Bee,” a satirical poem about a virgin queen bee’s maiden flight.
  4. Wattie made a motion that the club purchase a copy of Pathology of the Honey Bee and donate it to Orange County Public Library.  Chris seconded the motion and the club approved.
  5. Geneva brought up a discussion of the use of a full face respirator for the application of formic acid.  Several chemists among the group voiced opinions.  The respirator must fit; it must be properly cleaned; there might be a liability issue.  Geneva proposed that the discussion continue online so that more people might participate.
  6. Geneva mentioned that folks in Bee School have asked about a honey cooperative to sell honey to Weaver Street, but there was little interest among those present.
  7. Next she mentioned that there had been some inquiries on the listserv for honey, wax, pollen, etc.  Although the club cannot sell from the website, Geneva raised the possibility of putting up links to individuals, which would have to stay up for a year.  There was little interest from those present.
  8. Geneva announced that the club is looking for a more central location for the club-owned extractor and that the club needs a policy for its use.  In the June, 2010, minutes the club passed a motion that OCBA “charge a $5.00 user fee and a daily rental fee to keep folks serious about its use, and that the fees could be saved for the eventual replacement or upkeep of the equipment.”  Dick pointed out that the club has not received any of these fees.  This matter was tabled until the March meeting.
  9. Geneva proposed locating a couple of hives at the UUChurch which could be used for bee school and demonstrations and is a more central location than Lewis’ shop in northern Orange County.  This matter was also tabled for the March meeting.
  10. Rex pointed out three out-reach programs since the January meeting: John Harrell & Geneva at the Museum of Life and Science, Watty at a PTO presentation, and Logan & Rex at Durham Heritage Garden Club. Then he mentioned several events coming up which will need volunteers.  Please see the website for dates and events.
  11. David Bailey still has a few packages of bees for the second delivery date (April 20).


Geneva introduced the program’s topic for discussion and reviewed some guidelines for group discussion.  She invited the group to participate in a discussion to define some terms used in beekeeping.  What is the greatest current threat to honey bees? she asked.  Answers from the group: beekeepers, varroa mites, small hive beetles, price of honey, pesticides, lack of forage

Define organic: meeting the requirements of what the federal government defines as organic (there is no other standard in the U.S.), chemical free, a movement away from chemicals and pesticides

Define chemical free:  impossible to be chemical free– mother nature makes toxins, too, synthetic chemical free, free of toxic long-lived residue

Define natural: back to nature, treatments derived from plants rather than chemically produced, managing colonies as if feral or as if 100+ years ago, managing a hive as closely as possible to the way the hive would manage itself in the wild

Define CNG (Certified Naturally Grown): abiding by regulations about what can and cannot be used in the management of hives, similar to organic but specifically defined by the group

Define IPM (Integrated Pest Management): managing pests through a number of methods rather than just chemical treatment, recognizing pests and avoiding problems, using the safest or least damaging method first

Define traditional beekeeping: Langthroth hives, what’s taught in beekeeping, according to Keith Delaquay, meaningless term—group agreed that this should be “conventional”

There was not time to discuss more terms, but Geneva invited the group to continue to discuss on the listserv.

The meeting was adjourned.  Members enjoyed refreshments and conversations.

Respectfully submitted,

‘Lizabeth B. Collins

Category: Meeting Minutes