Beekeeping in Kauai Part II

After Matt Moore took us on a tour of the gardens, we suited up to go visit the apiary. Before I get into that, here are some facts I learned about beekeeping in Hawaii:

  • Kauai is one of the few places left that doesn’t have Small Hive Beetles or Varroa Mite (I think it is ok if we hate Hawaiian beekeepers a little bit for that)
  • They do have wax moths and do have to worry about the common bee ailments like chalkbrood and nosema.
  • Starting a hive in Kauai is actually pretty hard because of all the restrictions on importing bees. Most folks have to either catch a swarm or make friends with a local beekeeper to get a split.
  • Coconut husks make great smoker fuel

I really liked this sign as we walked towards the apiary. The farm is 10 acres with fruit trees all over the place so this is a nice reminder you are entering an area with lots of bees.

Here is a shot of the apiary.

This is Matt Moore taking a cover off of one of the hives.

Matt has an interesting way of removing supers (at least interesting to me). Instead of stacking supers as he removes them, he upends them as shown in the picture. He feels he squishes less bees this way.

Matt’s lit smoker with coconut husk as fuel. It burns really well and produces a nice cool smoke.

Matt and I opening up one of his hives.

We spotted a queen on one of the first hives we opened up. Matt says the golden color is very typical of a Hawaiian Queen.

This was a nice frame of honey pulled from one of the hives.

I was going to make this a two part post, but I still have a bunch of miscellaneous photos from our visit that I’ll post soon. All in all, this was a great visit, and it is amazing how bees can adapt to all sorts of climates and geography.

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2 Comments

Filed under beekeeping

2 responses to “Beekeeping in Kauai Part II

  1. Looks like you’re enjoying Kauai to the max! Beautiful photography, as always. Did you have a chance to taste the honey pictured?

  2. I did and I even bought some. There is also a local store that produces mead on the island that I’m going to try and check out before I leave.

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