Bees Getting Ready for Winter

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 Putting on the bee suit

Suiting up

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RHH is getting the bees ready for winter, which could descend any day now. We extracted the last of our honey last week. The top feeders have been removed and the winter covers added. Next week we will wrap the hives in black felt to guard agains the punishingly northwest winds that sweep across our property from now until April.
Now is the time when the colonies cease brood rearing and numbers are pared down to the minimum needed to survive. Though worker bees usually survive only 30-35 days in summer (they literally work themselves to death) the life expectancy over the winter is just long enough to make it until spring….if spring arrives early rather than late. The male drones are starting to be evicted from the hives and can be seen outside looking a little bewildered. They don’t forage (their only job is to mate with the queen) so once outside the protection of the hive, with its food source, they will die.
One of our hives lost its queen in September, we think, and efforts to combine the colony with another one were not successful. We do not expect this colony to survive the winter.
This year was disappointing in terms of honey yields not only for RHH but for many apiary owners we talked to. The cold, wet summer meant many lost foraging days for the bees. Following hard on the heels of the collapse of many colonies over the winter, the Ontario beekeeping industry has certainly taken a hard hit.
On the plus side, many consumers are genuinely alarmed by this and are educating themselves about the plight of the bees and the dangers of neonicotinoids.
We hope most of our colonies will survive the winter, and that next year our bees will provide us with an abundance of honey.

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Golden Stardust for Your Body: RHH Honey Tastings and Demonstrations

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Honey a-plenty!

Honey a-plenty!

Red House Honey is proud to launch customized honey tastings and honey extraction demonstrations for groups. Learn how honey is made, and taste the difference all-natural honey can make to your life and well-being.

A teaspoon of honey is pure golden stardust for your body. It’s the perfect gift for yourself or someone you love.

Now offering Buckwheat, Golden Aster, Golden Purple Loosestrife, White Wildflower, Kosher (OVH Certified), Amber/Buckwheat Infused honeys.

Visit RHH at Prescott Farmers’ and Crafters’ Market (Legion) and at the Jewish Community Centre/Ottawa at the November Chanukah Gift Fair. RHH products are sold at Ottawa Bagel Shop, Rideau Bakery/Rideau Street, Glebe Butcher/Ottawa, French Cafe/Manotick, Rooney Feeds/Iroquois, Home Hardware/Cardinal.

“We are stardust/we are golden”–Joni Mitchell

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RHH Christmas Gift Boxes

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RHH Gift Baskets and Boxes

RHH Gift Baskets and Boxes for Christmas

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Again this year RHH is pleased to offer customized gift boxes and baskets for Chanukah, Christmas and special occasion gifts. Discounts available for bulk advance orders. Choose your size (140g or 250g), your type (RAW/Kosher or FARM/Select Apiaries – Dark/Buckwheat, Amber/Buckwheat Infused, Golden/Aster or Golden/Purple Loosestrife or White/Wildflower. All items come in small or medium Kraft brown boxes tied with a red ribbon and resting on a bed of red tissue paper. Limited numbers of gift baskets available, some with teacup and saucer, tea bag, wooden honey spoon, lace doily and ribbon on a tissue paper bed. Or tell us what you’d like….we can customize a basket just for you! (May not be exactly as shown in picture.)

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Vinyl Cafe’s “Rosemary Honey”…True Beekeeping!

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Check out this Vinyl Cafe gem: Dave’s neighbour Eugene gets Sam and his friend to track bees to their home… and rob it!
http://castroller.com/podcasts/CbcRadioVinyl/3575895

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African Honey Project: Ghanaians helping Ghanaians

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African Honey Project: Ghanaians helping Ghanaians

African Honey Project: Ghanaians helping Ghanaians

One of Red House Honey’s operatives is in Accra, Ghana for the next few months and snapped a photo of this poster advertising a Beekeepers’ Co-operative near Kakum National Park. Beekeeping provides an alternate source of revenue for families living near the park through sales beeswax and honey. More people are being encouraged to take up beekeeping and help preserve the nearby forests, which are truly nature’s pharmacy.

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