Thursday, February 28, 2013

Hive Weight Gain by Area, Know Your Flows

I discovered something interesting today.  NASA keeps track of hive weights around the country.  By knowing your flows, you can better manage your hives.

Here's a record from my local area:

I have historically harvested honey in June.  Seeing this graph tells me to make sure I leave enough honey for the bees to make it through the rest of the year because there's no more honey to be had.  Apparently the earlier flow is black locust in April and white Dutch clover becomes available in substantial measure in May.

As a side note, comparing this area to others, this is a really ugly area to keep bees.  No wonder there are no commercial beekeepers around here.

Check out your own area at:  Know your flows!


  1. Sol, I don't see any local charts that have data from years that were not also a fall drought. Granted, those seem to be the norm the last couple of years, but I wonder what flow would be like if we were getting the kind of fall rains like we got 5 to 10 years ago.

    1. Yeah, I remember a few of those. It's too bad we don't have more and better data, but this isn't a very good beekeeping location.

      I remember....2008 I think it was, it rained every three days almost all summer except for three weeks in August. It was a pretty good year. I don't remember any really dry summers before that, back to 2005 when I moved here. Since then, they've been pretty poor.