Beekeeping in Vermont

Beekeeping in Vermont

Meet Bianca Braman

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Bianca Braman is the newly elected Vice President of the VBA board of directors.

Born and raised in the Adirondacks, Bianca is an adventurous person who loves to spend much of her time outside. 

After an education in Communications and years of working indoors, she discovered a fierce interest in honeybees. 

She was an active member of the Champlain Valley Beekeepers Association of New York before she attended a lecture given to the club by Michael Palmer. Impressed by his depth of knowledge, Bianca asked if she could visit Palmer's operation - and she did. She volunteered at French Hill Apiaries in 2018, before getting a full time job offer from another commercial beekeeper. When she asked Mike for a reference, he told her that she should work for him instead. 

Bianca has continued to work with Mike for the last six seasons. Mike taught her how to graft and she has developed a thorough understanding of his queen rearing methodology. 

In 2021, Bianca became a partner in Vermont Bees LLC and now brings her knowledge of bees to bear on her own beekeeping operation of over 300 colonies.

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VAAFM Survey Request

The Agency of Agriculture is requesting information from farms and organizations who were impacted by the flooding and severe weather that occurred between July 7 and 18. The purpose of this survey is to capture the type and scale of the damage suffered by agricultural producers in the state.

Survey data will be used to inform response efforts, effectively allocate resources, and advocate for future relief and recovery programs.

The survey should take between 5 and 10 minutes to complete and will remain open until August 28, 2023. Link to survey: 

Mike Palmer’s 50th Anniversary

Internationally known beekeeper Mike Palmer, who began beekeeping in 1974, was celebrated this week in an article published by the St. Albans Messenger. The story tells of a group of 25 beekeepers who helped Mike search for queens and gives a good overview of his contributions to beekeeping.

You can read the story here.

VBA 2023-24 Proposed Budget

VBA Members will be asked to vote on the proposed budget for the 2023-24 year at the upcoming VBA Summer Meeting on August 12th in South Strafford, VT. 

The proposed slate of officers, as submitted by the Nominating Committee (Jeff Battaglini, Bill Mares, and Samantha Alger) include:

  • For President – Jeff Battaglini
  • For Vice President – Bianca Braman
  • For Treasurer – Richard Roy (Incumbent)
  • For Membership Secretary – Laura Johnson (Incumbent)
  • For Recording Secretary – Fred Putnam, Jr. (Incumbent)
  • For Director-at-large – James Key (Incumbent)

Remember to register for the meeting!

Colony Losses Due to Flooding

Dear Beekeepers,   

First of all, we hope that you are safe during this significant flooding event.  

We are hearing reports of flooded and washed away apiaries. Beekeepers experiencing these losses may qualify for support through the USDA FSA ELAP program.  

Farmers should assess damages Field by Field and Crop by Crop and reach out to their local USDA Service Centers

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Summer Meeting Guest Speaker

Lincoln Sennett will be our featured speaker at the August 12 Summer Meeting in Strafford, VT. He is a co-owner of Swan’s Honey located in Albion, Maine. This beekeeping operation manages 3,000 – 4,000 colonies between Georgia and Maine. They offer pollination services, nuc sales, and produce and pack their own varietal honeys, including Tupelo, Sourwood, Wild Raspberry, Wild Blueberry, Clover, and Buckwheat. 

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VBA 2023 Summer Meeting

The 2023 summer meeting of the Vermont Beekeepers Association will be held on Saturday, August 12 at the Barrett Memorial Hall in Strafford, VT.

Directions from most places: I-89 Vermont Exit 2, take Rt. 132 East for about 6.5 miles. Barrett Memorial Hall is located at the junction of Rt. 132 and the Justin Morrill Memorial Highway in Strafford. See the location picture below. If you’re using GPS or mapping apps, the physical address is 248 VT Rte 132, S. Strafford, VT.

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If You Missed the June 29th Mite Management Workshop...

Join VBA's Fred Putnam, Jeff Battaglini, and Tony Antonucci as they talk about mid-summer colony concerns and management.

2 1/2 hours of discussion on pest mitigation and a variety of other subjects relevant to this time of year.

Simply login to the VBA site and look for Mid-Summer Management: Mite Management: Monitoring, Counting, Treatment & AMA (Login required) under the Calendar menu.