Humboldt County Beekeepers Association Humboldt County
Beekeepers Association
The Humboldt County Beekeepers Association is a community of beekeepers and a resource for the public.
We also have Yahoo and FaceBook groups.

Monthly Meeting

The Humboldt County Beekeepers Association meets on the first Thursday of every month except December at 6:30 p.m, in the auditorium at the Humboldt County Agriculture Department at 5630 South Broadway, Eureka, CA. Directions: Take the Humboldt Hill Road exit from Hwy 101 and then take a right on S. Broadway/Hill Road. The Agriculture Department is on the right across from KIEM. The auditorium is on the south side of the building. Contact (845–3362) for more information. New beekeepers are encouraged to come 30 minutes early to ask questions of more experienced beekeepers.

Upcoming Meetings  
Thursday, Sep 1

The Humboldt County Beekeepers Association (HCBA) General Meeting evening program begins at 6:30 pm and will feature a discussion session: "Fall Tasks and Winter Preparation for the Apiary." Come a little earlier for The "Beekeepers Q&A Forum"  which begins at 6:00 pm, an opportunity to share information & compare notes on management & troubleshooting.

Tuesday, Sep 6

The Humboldt County Beekeepers Association Board of Directors will meet for a business meeting at 6:00 pm at the Humboldt County Department of Agriculture, 5630 South Broadway in Eureka. Call Jamie Bucklin for more information at (707) 845-3362or email Members are welcome to attend. If you have an item for discussion, contact Jamie in advance to be included on the business agenda.

Education & Outreach

Call for Inspired Individuals to Join Us

We are currently looking forward to any members who are interested in joining the Humboldt Beekeepers Education and Outreach Committee - this is your chance to contribute to continuing education for Beekeepers and join us in providing information to the community on beekeeping and pollinators. If this sounds good to you, please contact .

Beekeeping Classes

Beekeeping classes are offered annually beginning in February. The following is a description of the class.

Anyone interested in starting their own hives for the first time this year, as well as folks who are just want to learn more about honeybees and beekeeping, HSU Extended Education is once again offering Practical Beekeeping classes. Topics include basic bee biology and natural history, life cycle and social organization, and basic colony management techniques. The class covers both conventional and alternative methods for keeping bees healthy and coping with common bee diseases and parasites. Students will also learn practical, hands-on skills while visiting local beeyards on several field trips, and will have the opportunity to purchase hive equipment and package bees at a discount in order to start their own honeybee colonies. Info about the class is at the HSU website.

Beekeeper's Year

 September  Swarm
    Honey harvest for many apiaries continues.
    How much honey to leave for the bees depends on variables, such as the location, size of the colony & type of bees- Check the honey/pollen stores in brood box & determine amount of honey to leave for the bees.  Many suggest for Humboldt region, 40-60 lbs honey (Including stores in brood boxes) in a typical Langstroth hive (30,000 bees) wintering in two 10-frame deeps or two to three 8 or 10-frame mediums (or similar combinations). To be safe, for the best advice on wintering your colonies successfully in a Langstroth hive, consult your experienced local beekeepers to estimate the optimal amount of honey to leave based on your particular colony.
    Considerations for Top Bar hives will vary - consult Les Crowder for good advice, contact him via his website:

    Evaluate colonies  - consider combining weak hives with stronger ones to increase winter survival, and provide bees with optimal space.

    Watch for robbing - from wasps and neighboring hives- reduce hive entrances or use robbing screens, (may help when feeding wet frames). A couple of hours of robbing can have serious consequences. Initial placement of  robbing screen best at night, bees will adjust.

    Provide water source for bees in warmer inland areas

    Monitor Varroa mite levels.

    Consider preparing winter insulation/ventilation systems.  Moisture boards, adding small upper entrance, and the optimal number of boxes relative to colony size may help with limiting mold. Extreme conditions (extended snow & ice) not usually a problem  in Humboldt Co.- but moisture & mold can be.

    Be aware of mice as colder weather sets in, mouse guard may help. 

      Bee Removal

      First consult the picture on our Wasps vs. Bees page to determine if what you have are really honeybees. If they are honeybees and are clustered outside, find a beekeeper on the Swarm tab of the Swarm/Wasp List to remove them free of charge. If the bees have taken up residence in a building wall or other enclosed space, find a beekeeper on the Cutout tab of the Swarm/Wasp List who can remove them. If you have wasps, find a person on the Wasp tab of the Swarm/Wasp List who will remove them for a fee.Wasp List

      Times Standard Beekeeping Articles

      A member gave a talk to the garden club. In 2014, the paper reported on pesticide effects on bees and on Bee Day. It also ran an article on the stresses caused by the dry weather. It quotes local beekeepers Jamie Bucklin, Seth Rick and Garrett Brinton, all members of our organization. They also ran an editorial by Joy Thomas on swarming.

      In 2013, the local paper ran an excellent article on beekeeping on Sunday, January 20 which quotes several of the members. A follow-up article on March 8 deals with swarming.

      Zombee Watch

      No, this isn't a Halloween spoof, there really are zombie bees. These are bees that have been infested with the larva of the Zombie Fly Apocephalus borealis. Honey bees infected by the Zombie Fly leave their hives at night and are attracted to nearby lights where they become stranded and eventually die. We now have reports of an infestation in Humboldt county. San Fransisco State University has set up a website called Zombee Watch that is tracking the infestation and is seeking help from people around the country, especially in California, to act as monitors. We encourage you to add your eyes and expertise to this effort.

      Bees & Beekeeping Supplies

      This list is not comprehensive but will get you started.

      Beekeeping Reading

      These are some of the books, journals and websites we've found useful.

      Contact the with suggestions or comments.