Happy New Year!

Late again!  I am still trying to get back to my monthly schedule of issuing the newsletter on the first--closer than the past few months but still not there.  Sorry!  I have formally switched from “bee” to “ski” for my seasons and the place that I had been spending the New Year skiing lacked any wireless/internet coverage at all!  (I was unaware of this before I set out but probably could’ve anticipated it had I given it more thought as I was at Bair Ranch in Glenwood Canyon.)  I hope you have enjoyed a wonderful holiday season with family and friends.

The two national bee associations, National Honey Producers Association (NHPA) and the American Beekeeping Federation (ABF) conferences begin today.  This year, the NHPA is in Albuquerque and the ABF is in Florida.  I will not be attending either this year as I will be attending the Good Food Awards in San Francisco next week instead.  I will be gone the 14th through the 17th.   For those of you attending either conference, have a wonderful time.  Learn lots and feel free to share this knowledge with CSBA.  I will gladly print a newsletter update.  If you hear a worthy speaker, please garner their contact information and I will try and bring them here. 

The New Year always brings about a period of introspection as well as resolutions for the upcoming year.  CSBA is no exception.

Accomplishments for 2015

We started out the year with a bang as the long-awaited Ross Conrad presented an advanced beekeeping seminar from 8:30 to 5 on January 24th at the Crescent Grange in Broomfield.  Many, many thanks to Don Studinski for his efforts on this seminar.  He went above and beyond the call of duty to get this event coordinated.

The CSBA worked with People and Pollinators Action Network (PPAN) and Boulder representative KC Becker and others to advocate for some changes to the Pesticide Applicators Act (PAA) at the 2015 legislative session.  We were successful in getting some changes implemented to the act:  a reduced sunset review period, a data base, a beekeeper, an organic farmer and a farm worker representative to the PAC.  The new PAC beekeeper representative is Lyle Johnston. 

Kim Flottum, editor of Bee Culture magazine, made 2 speaking appearances on April 30 and May 1.  Kim did a fine job and thanks go out to Tom Theobald for hosting. 

The Summer Bee College on June 13th featured MaryAnn Frazier of Penn State fame.  Mary Ann was joined by Tony Landretti of Rice’s Honey in Greeley, Jamie Strange from the Logan Bee Lab and Dr. Bill Collins from Fort Lewis College.    The College had record attendance yet again and kudos go to Tony Fronczek for all his help on organization and to Paul Limbach for entertaining the Fraziers. 

Oxalic acid was approved for mite control in 2015.  This was HUGE!  Greg Rye at Dakota Bees has manufactured an oxalic acid vaporizer that has been picked up by Mann Lake.  Congratulations Greg! 

The Healthy Bee / Bee Healthy WAS conference was, by far, the greatest challenge and success of the year.  The conference exceeded expectations by nearly every parameter.  There were great speakers, great financial support from our local and national sponsors and great attendance from WAS and CSBA members.  This year’s conference will he held in Oahu, Hawaii on October 13-15.  Sounds like fun to me!

Broomfield, Ft. Lupton, Parker and Westminster all removed bee bans and replaced with responsible code.  HOA’s continue to be a problem.  I see no solution to this unfounded fear of bees besides nonstop education and outreach.

Of course, not everything we set out to accomplish got done and some remains in the queue for this year:

We plan on inaugurating a “members only” section to the website.

The Master Beekeeping program is gunning for the launch of the Journeyman (intermediate level) class.  Stay tuned!!!!  See this newsletter for an update. 

Did you know the CSBA turned 135 last year???  135 years is a really long time to be around.  Not a soul volunteered to coordinate a single activity associated with this event so it came and went without so much as a peep.  Sad and avoidable but water under the bridge. 

The Forage Committee had another successful Pollinator Week and the public has really picked up on this piece of pollinator health.  The CSBA has maintained a middle-of-the-road stance of “plant more forage and decrease pesticide use” for the past several years.  We have some excellent publications available to our members for use in increasing forage and decreasing pesticide in your own community.  Please contact me if you would like any of them to distribute. 

I have not seen any deliverable from the Agritourism committee in the past year and believe this to be an untapped opportunity for many in the industry.

Goals for 2016

The major goal for 2016 will be the successful transition of the presidency to another.  As I announced previously, I will not be running for a 4th term this November.  This means that the opportunity has arrived to either build upon the momentum of these past 6 years or to take a different tack going forward.  Either way, it will be important to properly vet and select a candidate for the position of President.

There will be an Executive Committee meeting at the end of January and then we will know who plans on continuing forward and in what roles.  If you are interested in being part of the management team of the CSBA and would like further details, please click here for Officer Roles and Responsibilities.

The other top priority will be the State MP3.  This is the Managed Pollinator Protection Plan and the Presidential Task Force on Pollinator Health mandates it.  The MP3 has the potential to make a big difference in how the beekeeping business is conducted throughout the state—and not necessarily a good difference.  We need to be coordinated and engaged in the process to positively affect the outcome for Colorado beekeepers.  Want to help?  Drop me an email or give me a call. 

We will not be working on any legislative activities for the 2016 session. 

The CSBA would really like to provide funding to aid regional associations so we have a consistent “look” at all our education and outreach events.

Committees and Liaisons are still areas needing work.  It will be important to have solid functionality at these levels for the administrative transition.

A system needs to be implemented to track volunteer activities throughout the organization –whether through your regional association or on your own.  The CSBA year-end report needs this data.

Details on both the Summer Bee College and the CSBA Winter Meeting are being attended to now. 

CSBA Master Beekeeping Program Announces Journeyman Classes!!!!

Dr. Carolina Nyarady and her Master Beekeeping Committee team are pleased to announce the inaugural Journeyman Level Beekeeping Class.  Plans are underway to begin a Journeyman class in the first quarter of this year.  Congratulations to those of you who have already completed your Apprentice level certification and are ready for this second phase!

Are YOU interested in becoming a Master Beekeeper? Click here for the pre-requisites and application form for the Apprentice level program. 

Russian Bee Nucs

NCBA is considering making a run to Georgia for Russian Bee Nucs.  Pricing will be in the $170 range for 5 frame nucs delivered.  If you are interested in more information, please contact Don Studinski at dstudin@yahoo.com.  More information on Russian bees can be found here

Beekeeping Classes

Beekeeping class announcements are pouring in from a variety of fronts.  If you, or your regional association, are offering a class, please send the information to events@coloradobeekeepers.org ASAP so that I may post it to the CSBA calendar.  Remember, the CSBA website is “The Place to Bee” in Colorado and our traffic reflects that.  Don’t lose out on free advertising! 

Of Interest

Demand for education and outreach from the public continues to challenge our volunteer pool.  We need far more help on this front than we currently receive.  Please consider assisting your club or community. 

New Video from Plant Select (also on the website):

http://plantselect.org/video/pollinators-and-plant-select-with-sonya-anderson-2/

Judge green lights whistleblower claim against USDA by pesticide researcher Jonathan Lundgren:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/federal-eye/wp/2015/12/23/judge-green-lights-whistleblower-claim-against-usda-by-pesticide-researcher/

Jonathan has started an Indiegogo campaign to support his Blue Dasher Farm—an independent research farm.  Find out more here.

McGuckin Hardware in Boulder is phasing out neonics.

An interesting little infographic on honey labeling.

For Sale

PACKAGE BEE PEOPLE–TIME TO GET ME YOUR INFO FOR THE WEBSITE AND NEWSLETTER.  MEMBERS ONLY!!!

Lots of package info and class offerings beginning to hit the site, too. 

 

As always, thank you for being a member.

 

Beth Conrey

President, CSBA

970-213-3099