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Section 1.  The name of this non-profit organization shall be the Colonial Beekeepers Association.

Section 2.  The purpose of this organization shall be:

  • A. To foster the keeping and efficient management of honey bees.
  • B. To educate the members in the science and techniques of apiculture.
  • C. To inform the members and the public, on occasion, of the ecological and economic benefits of honey bee culture.
  • D. To provide opportunities for informal exchanges of information through fellowship and association with other beekeepers.


Section 1.  Any person with an interest in beekeeping shall be eligible for membership in this organization.

Section 2.  All members will be asked to join the Virginia State Beekeeping Association (VSBA).


Section 1.  The officers shall be President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer. (The offices of Secretary and Treasurer may be combined.)

Section 2.  It is required that officers are members of the VSBA.


Section 1.  The duties of said officers shall be the duties customary to each office as described in Robert's Rules of Order.


Section 1.  The Executive Committee shall consist of the elected officers and the Chairman of each Standing Committee.

Section 2.  The purpose of the Executive Committee shall be to conduct such business as may be necessary between meetings, to plan activities and perform such other duties as may be designated in the By-Laws.


Section 1.  Regular meetings shall be held at 7 P.M., on the third Tuesday of each month.

Section 2.  Special meetings may be held at times and places, and for such purposes as the membership may agree upon.


Section 1.  To encourage interest in beekeeping among people of all ages and to engage in community activities to that end.

Section 2.  To avoid engaging in social or political controversy as an organization.

Section 3.  To cooperate actively with other apicultural groups and similar organizations to achieve the purposes of this association.


Section 1.  Proposed amendments to this constitution or the By-Laws shall be prepared in writing and shall be read at a regular meeting.

Section 2.  Each amendment so proposed shall be voted on at the next regular meeting.

Section 3.  Amendments shall be accepted upon receipt of an affirmative vote by two-thirds of the active members present and voting.



Section 1.  One-fourth of the active membership shall constitute a quorum for regular meetings.

Section 2.  Three members of the Executive Committee shall constitute a quorum for committee business.


Section 1.  Membership shall be granted to an individual and his/her immediate family upon payment of the prescribed dues.

Section 2.  A member shall be considered inactive when (1) he/she so requests; (2) he/she is delinquent in paying his/her dues.


Section 1.  The order of business at regular meetings shall be:

  • A. Call to Order
  • B. Secretary's Report
  • C. Treasurer's Report
  • D. Old Business
  • E. New Business
  • F. Program
  • G. Adjournment

Section 2.  The order of business may be altered by the presiding officer as may be required.


Section 1.  Dues shall be established annually by the members present at the May meeting and shall be due and payable at the July meeting.

Section 2.  Special assessments and fees may be established by a majority vote of members present at a regular meeting.


Section 1.  A Nominating Committee, appointed by the Executive Committee, shall present a complete slate of candidates to the membership at the April meeting annually. Additional nominations will be accepted from the floor.

Section 2.  Officers shall be elected from the nominees, annually, at the May meeting, and shall take office at the beginning of the Fiscal Year, July 1st.

Section 3.  Vacancies in any of the offices shall be filled by special election at a regular meeting.


Section 1.  The Standing Committees of this organization shall be the Program Committee, the Publicity Committee, and the Resource Committee. The Standing Committees shall meet at least monthly to perform the duties indicated hereafter.

Section 2.  Committee Chairmen.

  • A. The President shall appoint the Committee Chairmen.
  • B. The Chairman of the Resource Committee shall also serve as the Apicultural Advisor. Therefore, this committee chairman shall be an individual recognized by the community as a knowledgeable and fully qualified keeper of the bees.

Section 3.  Any active member may serve on one or more of the Standing Committees.

Section 4.  The Program Committee shall determine the program schedule for regular and special meetings, make all necessary arrangements for speakers, materials, etc., and at the May regular meeting, present a proposed program for the year beginning in July.

Section 5.  The Publicity Committee shall publicize the activities of the organization and disseminate information about beekeeping.

Section 6.  The Resources Committee shall provide an internal source of expertise in the science of apiculture, including a library of literature and a fully qualified advisor. In conjunction with the Program Committee, the Resources Committee shall plan, develop and present educational lectures, seminars, and field trips, including such instructional materials as may be necessary.


Section 1.  The Treasurer shall deposit dues, fees, and other monies accruing to the organization in a bank or credit union account. The President and Vice-President shall be designated as co-custodians of the account.

Section 2.  The Treasurer may write checks or drafts up to the amount of $100.00 without approval. Checks in excess of $100.00 shall receive approval by either the Vice-President or President.

Section 3.  The Treasurer may establish a petty cash fund of $35.00.

Section 4.  Each May, or upon termination of office by the incumbent treasurer, whichever occurs first, the organization's fund accounts shall be audited by an Audit Committee consisting of three members appointed by the President. The Committee shall certify the true state of the accounts. 



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April Meetings
and Events

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April 6th
Beginning Beekeeping
(Session 4)


April 13th
Beginning Beekeeping
(Bonus Session 5, Woodenware)


April 18th
Monthy Meeting 


April 29th
Beginning Beekeeping
(Yard Day) 




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May Meetings
and Events

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May 16th
Monthy Meeting







Follow the "Upcoming Events" or "Latest News" link under the Main Menu for more information.




NewBees Corner


Information listed here is for the new beekeepers looking for new information and guidance on beekeeping and beekeeping chores:




Well the chances for colder weather are finnally behind us and the bees are busy. There are many things in bloom now and more to come. With all these resources the bees are ready to reproduce, SWARM! I've been doing my best to quell that desire by opening the brood nest and practicing nectar management but in some cases it just isn't enough. So if I see evidence of swarming: queen cups with eggs or larva visible or even capped queen cells. What do you do?

Here are some links for you to follow that give some practical advise. First is Michael Bush on why seeing queen cells isn't so bad and what to do and not to do. The second is a 22 page read that does a great job of explaining what could be going on in your hive. The pages that mimic Michael's answer are 13 & 14. There Are Queen Cells In My Hive-What Should I Do?. Lastly, here's a link to how you might transplant them to a queenless colony or make a nuc. Fat Beeman doesn't wear a veil, you should! Fat Beeman never says "it is my opinion" so take heed!  Queen Cell Transplant

The hive manipulations to consider as the nectar flow is on are "Opening the Broodnest" and "Nectar Management 101". If opening/expanding the brood nest I would caution to start slowly as you become familiar with the technique and get more aggressive later in April and May. Here we go!

Finally, so you have your new nuc or package bees, how do you grow them? Here's a link to a presentation of how to grow your bees into 3 boxes:Growing Nucs




Last week I helped a club member find and remove the queen in a colony that had swarm cells, I worked on the James River and saw an Osprey investigating a nest site, fruit trees were budding and many ornamentals are in bloom, in my home yard I inspected a colony in a 10 frame deep with 8 frames of brood.... This weekend I'm sitting by the wood stove wondering what will survive and if they have the hindsight to ponder "WHAT WAS I THINKING?" There is no way to stop the weather, we can only look ahead and try and do what we can. In Florida an orchard owner may turn on the sprinklers to keep the buds from freezing or maybe light smudge pots, my trees are on their own. I heard of a swarm being caught last week, will that queen cell survive, will the queen get an opportunity for a mating flight, will there be drones to mate with? It is way early in the year and 35 or more days before last frost is forecast for our area. That hive will be doctored up in the weeks ahead when success or failure can be determined. This appears to be a year when those colonies that are a bit slower may win the race. Keep an eye on the forecast and be cautious in your hive manipulations, don't do too much too early! Some colonies may suffer chilled brood as they have to cluster and abandon edges of the brood nest. You'll get to see how hygienic your colonies are. Make sure they have stores close as there are still night time temps in the 30's. The forecast for the next 15 days has 13 days with a chance of rain. If there are drones will they fly, will that queen get a chance to fly? Be cautious when considering making splits. Hang in there, Spring is coming even though you may think it is here already!




So winter is coming and we have these roller coaster days of warm and cold temperatures to deal with. Average temperature for this time of year is 61°, believe it or not! Our coldest days come in January and February. Night time temps are in the mid 40's so the bees are clustering at night and active in the day. But what do they have to feed on? Probably and most unfortunately they are eating up all their winter stores! You need to feed in winter but winter feeding is different. Best to feed liquid on the warm days, 2:1 (2 parts sugar to 1 part water) and then have sugar feed on for the colder days. You can put sugar feed on and then feed liquid when the weatherman calls for a warm spell. Make your liquid feed up fresh or keep it warm, bees will take to 70° syrup better than 50° syrup. Take the liquid off once the temperature drops again as the bees might not take it and a leaking container would be the end of the colony.

Did you know an inner cover has two sides? A shallow summer side that maintains bee space and a deeper winter side that allows for fondant or sugar candy to be placed on the top bars available to the cluster. Here are some links to follow for making winter feed for your colonies. This first method requires cooking and I have used it with great success. To use it, follow this link. Something I've read is that the vinegar is essential to add in the heating process as it aids in breaking down the cane sugar into the sugars that are in honey, fructose and glucose as well as raising the acidity level closer to natural honey.

A second method requires no cooking but letting the moisture evaporate out leaving a solid block. Here are links to two similar methods. I have not used these recipes as yet but have heard some have used them successfully. To use them follow this link for 1 or this link for 2. There is also information on the number 2 site for using the "Mountain Camp" method of feeding dry sugar. I prefer to make my feed in advance and then apply it to the hive but that's beekeeping, each of us has our own preference.