ACBA February 2018 Newsletter

********New Business

Volunteers Needed (Posting this again this month)
We have several interesting opportunities for getting more involved in the club. Can you help with one or more of the following?
Education Outreach: This is a new volunteer position that could use your vision. Identify opportunities for the ACBA to work with schools, groups and the public to educate them about pesticides, pollinator gardening, honeybees and the environment.
Hospitality backup: Clyde Serda is the club member who’s been providing the refreshments for meetings. Could you take over this task occasionally? It involves procuring the hot water urn from Clyde (unless you have your own), along with tea and supplies; buying a selection of snacks paid for by the club; setting refreshments up before the meeting starts.
Meeting note taker: Take notes about the main presentation at the meeting and give your notes to Laurel Przybylski, our newsletter editor. You don’t have to do this at every meeting.
Backup librarian: The ACBA has an extensive collection of books and videos that we lend to members. Elinor Levine has done an outstanding job of this for several years. She needs someone to take over part-time. It involves bringing books to meetings and handling the checkout process. We are working on making some changes to make all this more efficient, and the backup librarian could contribute to this effort.
If you’d like to take on one of these roles, or want to find out more, contact Ronni Brega, or 510-813-3752.

Beekeeping Mentors: If you are an experienced beekeeper and wish to be added to the list of mentors, please contact Jerry Przybylski.  Members who want or need a mentor, or if you would like a list of mentors, please contact Jerry Przybylski. (510) 407-1146

ACBA Discussion Group Link   ACBA has a Google group for members to talk about bees, share information, and ask beekeeping questions of each other. It is a great way to learn from each other. It can be accessed through the Alameda County Beekeepers Association website or these links:

For those who are using Gmail:!forum/the-alameda-county-beekeepers-association
If they do not use Gmail, they can subscribe to the list by sending an email (using the email account they want to use for the list) to:

ACBA to Repeat Sponsorship of Dessert Contest (Posting this again for this month.)
At the December meeting, members approved our sponsorship of the 2018 “Honey, It’s a Dessert” competition at the Alameda County Fair.
We’ll award first-, second- and third-place prizes for the best desserts featuring honey, in three categories. Total expenditure will be $180.
Start now developing your best honey recipes! ACBA members are eligible to win these lucrative prizes.

Report from ACBA Officers meeting Jan. 30, 2018
*We would like to take a table at Plant Exchange to do bee education on March 31 at a cost of $50 per table. If members agree, we want a couple of people to staff the table.
*The website is in the process of a revamp; much usable information is already available at
*We also have new, role-based emails:,,;,, and
*Reminder: Current members need to renew membership by March 31. See membership secretary Paul Thompson at a meeting, or send a check for $10.00 with a filled-out membership form to Paul. Find the membership form, including the mailing address, here.
*We would like to further our mission of supporting local beekeepers by contributing to a few selected organizations on a case-by-case basis. Each donation would be approved by the members.
If you have ideas for these contributions, please email ACBA president Ronni Brega at
*Studio One and Rotary Nature Center updates: The Rotary Nature Center will receive a major upgrade, but there is no timeline at this point.
*The Studio One Art Center will allow us to keep meeting there and has provided a mailing address for us.
The officers have signed the constitution.
January 9 Meeting Notes
The January 9 meeting featured two experienced club members speaking about catching swarms and attracting swarms to bait boxes. These are just a few important points from their thorough presentations.
Swarm Catching by Andre Krugelov
*Timing is important. Swarms can find a new place to go in half an hour, so if you get a call, you have to be ready to go. Have your equipment ready at all times, including your smoker, bee suuit, a good-sized box and a pruner.
*Pick the swarms you want to go after in terms of geo location and how high up they are. Remember that you’ll have to go there twice.
*Andre often uses a cardboard nucleus box with frames. Then, he can simply transfer the bee-filled frames into the new hive.
*Do not just collect what you can of the swarm and then leave. It’s bad to leave bees behind. They will buzz around and may terrorize the homeowners.
*Sometimes swarms return to the same spot because of the pheromones. Let the homeowner know that might be the case. It’s also a good place to put a swarm trap.
*If you haven’t collected a swarm before, volunteer to help someone else who’s claimed a swarm.
*Catching swarms is like a hunt; it’s a great adrenaline rush, and a great way to replace lost colonies. To get on the swarm list, join the ACBA and then contact Paul Thompson, membership secretary, He will add you to the list; then, it’s a google group that you should be able to access from any email provider.
Bait Hive / Swarm Traps by Phil Stob, Fremont
Bait Hives, or Swarm Traps are a great way to get free bees, and a swarm is more likely to be survivor bees.
*There are three fundamental aspects of a good bait hive:
*Scent: use Lemon Grass Oil, Swarm Commander, or other commercial lure. The smell of honey, wax,   propolis and old black comb and wood will attract the swarm
*Space: 40 liters of empty space is a good size—a ten-frame deep box or two medium boxes. Leave the box mostly empty or use foundationless frames. The entrance should be small, about two square inches. The bait hive should be dry and not drafty. Vented bottom boards should be blocked off.
About 2 inches of opening set with a piece of wood or something else shoved in the opening.  Big enough for everyone to get in, but small enough for them to defend.  A standard reducer works fine.
Put in one or two frames of drawn comb, the darker the better. Place them furthest from the entrance, with a couple of frames of foundation on either side. Fill the rest of the box with foundationless frame or frames with starter strips.
If you catch a swarm, replace the trap box as soon as possible. Another swarm may be waiting.

ACBA Year End Financials (Posting this again this month.)
Dues: $2,010.00
Donations: $900
Other Income: $4,960.98
Expenses: $(3981.04)
Expected Expenses: $(2201.44)
Net Annual $1,688.5

Year End Balance: $20,438.15

If you have any outstanding reimbursements please fill out the reimbursement form. This can be downloaded from the following link:

If you have any questions or issues please reach out directly to our Treasurer AT: