“Nuc'” (pronounced “newk”) is beekeeping shorthand for a small nucleus colony housed in a mini-hive or “nuc box.” With resources from an established hive, a nuc consists of a queen, a small number of other bees, and frames with food and brood in various development. Among other uses, nucs can start or expand apiaries.
Beekeeping is the ancient agricultural practice of managing honey bees in enclosed structures called beehives. Beekeepers may obtain crop pollination services from these bees and harvest their honey, beeswax, pollen, and other products. Beekeeping can be a hobby or commercial in nature.
Honey flow is when nectar is so abundant that bees gather enough for their current needs dietary needs and store surplus honey for the future. Thus, honey flow is really about nectar flow. Surplus honey feeds the colony during low nectar times and provides honey for harvest by beekeepers.
Bee suits are white because honey bees are reputed to dislike dark colors as a defense mechanism against predators such as bears, raccoons, and skunks. Equally important, white absorb less heat from the summer sun than darker colors, making whites suits more comfortable for the beekeeper than a darker suit.
Essential beekeeping starter kits should include a deep hive box with a bottom board, covers, frames, foundation, essential tools, and some protective gear. As your colonies grow, you will need additional hive components and supplies available in a more expensive beginning beekeeping kit.
Foundationless frames are beehive frames with only a top bar starter strip for bees to begin drawing wax. Without a base, foundationless frames provide a more natural building space where bees can determine cell sizes on their own. However, foundationless frames require proper setup and handling to avoid potential problems.
A queen excluder is a metal or plastic grill serving as a selective barrier between hive boxes. Gaps in the grill permit passage of worker bees but not the larger queen and drones. An excluder placed above the brood nest prevents the queen from accessing the honey supers to lay eggs.
Beekeepers manage honey bees housed in hives as a hobby or commercially. Keeping bees healthy, beekeepers harvest bee products such as honey and beeswax, among other things, for their use or for sale. Seasonal needs and the objectives and scope of a beekeeping operation determine specific beekeeping tasks.
Over time, honey crystallizes or granulates, transforming from a thick, viscous liquid into a solid, gritty mass. Crystallization is a natural process that does not alter the elemental composition of the honey.
Beehive frames and foundation create a space where bees build wax comb to store food and raise brood. Rectangular frames hold a wax or plastic sheet of foundation embossed with hexagonal cells serving as a base for drawing straight comb.