The Buzz

MONTHLY MEETING INFORMATION:  The Outer Banks BeeKeeper’s Guild meets the second Wednesday of each month.  Our home base is the Kill Devil Hills Library’s meeting room; however, meeting locations may change according to programming, so be sure to check this site for updates or “subscribe” for our posts below.  Show up anytime after 6:30 p.m. to socialize, and we’ll begin at 7:00 p.m.  If you arrive after the Library has locked their front door at 7:00 p.m., follow the sidewalk on the left side of the building around to the back door. If you would like to participate in the raffle, bring a little cash for ticket donation and/or any items to be raffled (do not have to be bee-related).  The raffle is usually held at the end of most meetings.

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Honey Contest Results!

Posted by Denise Deacon on November 11, 2017
Category: Uncategorized

Congratulations to our Second Annual Honey Contest entrants and winners!

What a fabulous night… Over 40 guests enjoyed a great evening of beekeeping camaraderie while eating delicious dishes and sampling fabulous Outer Banks honeys.  Thanks to everyone who attended and to those who brought potluck sides… it all made for a memorable event!

Special thanks to our judges Rick Coor (NCSBA President), Paul Newbold (NCSBA Master Beekeeping Committee and Born & Bred Queen-Rearing Program) and chef-restaurantaur Joey Russo (owner of Russo’s Bistro & Bar in Kitty Hawk, who also provided the evening’s delicious chili!).

Also, thanks to our other special guests in attendance… Fountain Odom (one of our founding members who traveled from Charlotte, NC, to bee with us!), and Cheryl Newbold (our NCSBA Regional Director) and Etienne Nadeau (president of the Beekeepers of the Albemarle) who both helped with the judging equipment… refractometer (tests density/humidity) and polariscope (shows cleanliness).

We had 14 fabulous entries for the contest.  And the winners are…

People’s Choice Award:
Ken Randall (Frisco)

Judges’ Choice:
First Place – Light: Virgil Lanning (Kitty Hawk)
First Place – Amber: Steve Ryan & Mick Harris (Salvo)

Special Mentions:
Second Place – Lenie & Tom Taylor (Wanchese)

Third Place – Three-Way Tie:
Hugh Taylor (KDH/Colington)
Drew Owens (Kill Devil Hills)
Jeanne Brooke (KDH/Colington)

L-R: Russo, Coor, Harris, Ryan, Lanning & Newbold

The judges getting busy with it:

Attendees sampling before voting for People’s Choice:


Potluck & Honey Contest 11/8

Posted by Denise Deacon on October 31, 2017
Category: Uncategorized

The Outer Banks BeeKeepers’ Guild’s Second Annual Potluck & Honey Contest will be held next Wednesday, November 8, beginning at 6 pm at Denise’s house (in lieu of our regular meeting at the KDH Library).  An Evite invitation was sent out to all subscribers last week with the details… if you have not already done so, please RSVP at your earliest convenience!  If you did not receive the Evite, let me know at and I will resend it to you.

If you are unable to attend but would like to enter your honey, no problem!! Contact me ASAP (252.722.3118) so that I can get it from you before next Wednesday.

We hope to see you there – it promises to be a fun evening!

Sophie’s Choice… An Inspiring One!

Posted by Denise Deacon on October 26, 2017
Category: Uncategorized

I think we can all agree that young faces in the realm of beekeeping are a very welcome sight!  One of the newest to join the Guild, Sophie Johnson is a student at First Flight High School… check out this fabulous article she wrote for the school newspaper describing her new beekeeping passion!  It can be found following this link, on Page 24:


Message from the NCSBA Prez!

Posted by Denise Deacon on October 12, 2017
Category: Uncategorized

Certified Beekeepers of North Carolina,

You are encouraged to apply for a grant from the North Carolina Beehive Grant fund. The process is not difficult and there will be no application fee. All pertinent information has been posted on the website including the link for the recent checklist and fact sheet from the NCADFPTF.

Beehive Grant fund applications will be accepted beginning Monday, October 16 by logging on to and clicking on the Beehive application portal. Applicants are reminded to be ready with scans of supporting documentation in order to attach to their application. Applicants should also have a clearly defined use of the funds ready in order to complete their application. The allocated funds will almost assuredly be depleted this year but there may be more next year, so get your name in the pot!

Your questions are welcome. Please contact Paul Newbold at

Rick Coor
NCSBA President
Chapters mailing list

The Michael Bush event previously scheduled for Oct. 14 in Smithfield, NC, has been postponed to February 24, 2018.  Please see the previous post on our website and info below from the organizer regarding the rescheduled event.

NOTE: Change of Date to February 24, 2018

Some of you may have already received this notice. If you have already purchased your tickets, you have two options:
Full Refund
Transfer ticket to Feb 24 event
Let us know what you want to do as soon as possible.

Same time, same place, same speaker. Different date.

We apologize for any inconvenience.


NC Bee Education & Training, Inc – a 501c3
Sponsor of Ray’s Bee School
Training Beekeepers for Today and Tomorrow.

Reminder: Next Mtg. Wednesday, 10/11

Posted by Denise Deacon on October 9, 2017
Category: Uncategorized

The next regular meeting of the Outer Banks BeeKeepers’ Guild will be held this Wednesday, October 11, 2017, at the KDH Library, beginning at 7:00 p.m. Please feel free to arrive anytime after 6:30 to socialize prior, and remember that if you arrive later than 7 (when the library has locked their front door) just follow the sidewalk around the left side of the building to the back door.

We plan to enjoy round table discussion on any beekeeping topic/subject or questions that anyone would like to bring up, as well as others to include:

* Suggestions for next year’s speakers & topics
* 2018 Officer Nominations
* Mentor/Apprentice Program & New Beekeeper Retention Ideas
* Honey Contest & potluck in November – looking for a volunteer to host it at your crib! Currently plan to hold it the same day as our regular meeting (Nov. 8) unless it works better on another day for our volunteer host.
* How to best utilize our growing bank funds.

Please come loaded for bear with any ideas, questions or suggestions about the above topics and any others you’d like to address!

If you have any questions in the meantime, please feel free to contact me. Otherwise, I hope to see you there this Wednesday, 10/11!

Denise Deacon
President, OBX Bee Guild – 252.722.3118



Applications open October 16… see below for more info from the NCSBA.

Forward to members interested in the Beehive Grant

The Beehive grant has published guidelines and instruction. click the link below and it will take to their site.
scroll to the bottom of the page and the links will be there.

Cycle XI and Beehive Grants open October 16. Follow the link below for application guidelines, instructions, and checklists.

Paul Newbold
252-264-0245 H
252-312-4629 C
Chapters mailing list

The Neuse River Beekeepers are holding an all-day event on October 7 and invite all to attend!

Great hurricane-preparation advice for your hives forwarded (many thanks!!) from Dr. Tarpy at NCSU:

Hi everyone,

With uncertain track of hurricane Irma, there are some important considerations for beekeepers who may be affected by the heavy rain and winds. Please further disseminate to your local network of beekeepers.

First, make sure hive equipment is secured to resist strong winds. A simple brick on the top lid is likely to be insufficient to keep the lid from flying off in winds above 50 mph. A lidless hive can cause problems for the bees by introducing moisture and letting heat escape. Strapping the lid down with ratchet straps or securing with duct tape might be in order, particularly for outlying yards. The same is true for hive boxes, particularly if they are relatively new (i.e., the bees have not yet propolized them together sufficiently). Also consider removing unnecessary boxes (e.g., top-hive feeders) to minimize the wind profile.

Second, be sure to have the hives on sturdy stands or level ground. Entire beehives can be blown over by strong winds, particularly when they are fairly tall with many honey supers or are otherwise top heavy. If the hives are on tall or insecure stands, you can move them onto (dry) level ground temporarily to lessen the chances that they topple. Importantly, if you’re using solid bottom boards, be sure to have your hives tilting forward so that rain water does not pool and collect on the floor of the hive.

Third, beware of falling trees and tree limbs. These can be particularly problematic for beehives since they can completely crush all equipment and kill the entire colony. It is also hard to prevent with some sort of barrier or cover because of the sheer weight of many trees, so if you apiary is in a wooded location you may need to move the hives temporarily.

Fourth, make sure the hives are not in low-lying areas or those prone to flooding. River banks can be useful apiary locations because of their proximity to fresh water, but in flooding conditions entire apiaries can be tragically swept away. Be sure to move any beehives in flood plains until the waters have subsided. Beehives on the ground but in recessed areas can cause water to flood the entrances and may even suffocate the bees if not given an upper entrance.

Finally, following heavy rains like hurricanes, various local and state agencies have traditionally sprayed regions with stagnant water to control mosquito outbreaks. While important for public health, such insecticides can be extremely problematic for honey bees. If you are registered through the NCDA&CS, you will be contacted directly if your beehives are in an area schedule to be sprayed. If you are not registered, however, the state has no means to notify you and your bees may be at risk to insecticide exposure. Please consult the Agricultural Chemical manual for information and advice about how to mitigate exposure to pesticides.

Hope your bees stay safe and dry! Sincerely, David


David R. Tarpy
Professor and Extension Apiculturist
Department of Entomology, Campus Box 7613
North Carolina State University
Raleigh, NC 27695-7613

Our next meeting will be on Wednesday, September 13, at the Kill Devil Hills Library starting at 7:00 p.m.  Please remember, the Library asks that we not bring food or drinks due to their new carpet, and they do lock their front door at 7:00 so if you arrive after then please follow the sidewalk along the left side of the building to the back door.

Our guest speaker will be our region’s NC Department of Agriculture Apiary Inspector, Adolphus Leonard!  Adolphus will be addressing the subject of preparing a beehive for winter, what exactly is going on while the bees “cluster” for winter (cluster dynamics), and will include a Question & Answer session regarding ANY AND ALL questions you have!

Here is your chance to get personalized advice from an Expert in the Field!!  It has been awhile since we have had Adolphus visit, and he has a WEALTH of knowledge.  Bring any and all questions regarding anything related to honey bees.  Hesitant to raise your hand to ask?  We all know that feeling, so we will also have a “question jar” on hand where you can submit them in writing prior to the meeting start.  Additionally, if you can’t be present at the meeting, feel free to forward your questions to me and I will ask them for you!

We’ll also include our usual raffle, so please bring any items you’d like to donate (bee related or otherwise) and/or some dollars to donate toward a ticket to win!

Hope to see you next Wednesday, Sept. 13!