Andro Beekeepers Club to Hear Bates Senior’s Research

Sam Whittaker, a Bates senior biology major, will offer the findings from his thesis research to the Androscoggin Beekeepers Club on Wednesday evening, October 10th at 6:30 PM. The meeting will be at the Vestry building of the West Auburn Congregational Church, 811 West Auburn Road. The meeting is open to the public, and is especially appropriate for any considering bee-keeping and wanting to meet a group of area beekeepers.

Sam’s research over this past summer has studied bee populations in suburban and urban community and private gardens in the southern Maine area. The intent of the research is to look at the land use around all of the sites, e.g. green space, roads, impermeable surfaces, and see if they influence the genera of bee populations you would find there. The research includes 20 different sites in a numerous cities such as Auburn, Lewiston and Portland, and in rural sites such as Minot. The research is supervised by Dr. Carla Essenberg, Assistant Professor of Biology, whose research is in pollination ecology and plant animal interactions.

Sam Whitaker is an biology major in the Bates Class of 2019. When he isn’t in the field researching, he enjoys singing in his acapella group and playing frisbee with his friends.

Club meetings are normally held on the second Wednesday of each month from September to May, with hive openings for training at member’s locations in the summer.

Sorry, but no Beekeeper Pot Luck Supper in the blizzard!

Hi folks–

We keep trying to have a meeting, but maybe the bee gods are angry, or need more good will from us.  But we are supposed to get 6″ to a foot of snow tomorrow, starting in mid-day and peaking right at the early evening hour when we had hoped to have our Beekeepers’ Pot Luck.  So with regret, we will cancel for Feb.  I will be out of the country for our March meeting, but will talk to Charlie and Pete to see if they are able to get our Pot Luck Supper or another program on for the second Wednesday of March.



Shoveling out the hives!

January 10, 2018 Meeting Cancelled


Thanks for your patience.  We have missed some meetings this fall, and my fault, due to family travel, other duties and some minor knee surgery.  We will not try to have a meeting this month on Jan. 10th.

We will have a meeting in Feb, but our normal second Wednesday, Feb. 14th, is also Valentine’s Day and Ash Wednesday.  So we will meet the previous Wednesday, Feb. 7th, at 6:30 PM in the vestry of the West Auburn Congregational Church, 811 West Auburn Road.  We will have our 3rd annual “Beekeepers’ Potluck Supper,” so bring a dish that includes honey in some way!

Bill Hiss

November 2017 ABC Meeting Cancelled

No November ABC Meeting
Nov 8, 2017
Please note that there will be no meeting for the Androscoggin Beekeepers Club November 2017

Unfortunately the ABC meeting for this month (which would would have been held tonight) will be cancelled.
Due to the late nature of this notice, please alert your friends who were planning to attend tonight’s gathering.

There is a program in place for December and we hope to see you then.

October 2017 ABC Meeting

“Pie and Coffee Brain Dump”
6:30 PM
Wednesday, Oct. 11
Vestry of the West Auburn Congregational Church
It seems like a mixed year for many of us, with some hives producing well and others with puzzles.  Rather than have a speaker on a topic, let’s have a brain dump, with members sharing from this season.
We will provide a variety of good pies from Wallingford’s Orchards, coffee and tea and various cold drinks.
We will have the projector and screen set up, so send slides of your hives to Bill ( as email attachments, and he will have them loaded and ready to go, so you can speak to your hive’s issues, plus or minus.  Or bring the slides on a thumb drive, and we can load them at the meeting.
In lieu of a September meeting, we had a very helpful hive opening at the home of Glen and Susie Wendlend in Durham.  They have two first-year hives, using Russian queens. It was an eye-opener for most of us: the hives have been stunningly productive for a first-year effort.
Hoping to see you on Wednesday!

Hive Opening, September 10th, 1 PM

Hive Opening, Sunday, Sept. 10, 1 PM

Gene and Susie Wendland, new members of the Androscoggin Beekeepers, will be hosting a hive opening at their new hives in place of a normal September evening meeting.   We will gather at their home: 824 Royalsborough Road, Durham  04222-5331.  Royalsborough Road is Route 136 from New Auburn down to Freeport.  Their house is about a mile past the country store, and they will have a sign up to show you to turn left off of 136 onto a dirt road right before their house, as their hives are about 30 yards down this dirt road.

Gene and Susie started their hives this spring with Russian Queens from Phil and Meghan Gavin at the Honey Exchange.  Many of you know Phil and Meghan, and will recall that he gave a presentation for the ABC on Russian Queens.  Gene’s and Susie’s bees have taken off like a rocket, and they are in almost perfect location, next to a water source and with ample fields around them.  For those of you interested in learning about Russian Queens, this will be a fine opportunity.

2017 North American Mite-A-Thon


Saturday, September 9 to Saturday, September 16, 2017

The Mite-A-Thon is a week to test Honey Bee hives for levels of Varroa mites across all of North America.

This is the first annual coordinated event to gather data on Varroa mite infestations and to discuss management strategies. Commercial, sideliner, and hobbyist beekeepers will be enrolled to participate through their respective clubs and associations to create a broad distribution of sampling sites across Canada, the United States, and Mexico. A common measurement protocol will be used, and data will be uploaded to the Mite Check database.

OBJECTIVE: To raise awareness and gather data about the level of Varroa mites across the hives of North America and to teach consistent and effective methods to measure mite load. As a secondary goal, treatment strategies will be made available for discussion utilizing partner developed information and outreach materials.

DATE: The week of September 9, 2017, with a practice test during Pollinator Week (June) 2017

PARTICIPANTS: All beekeepers are encouraged to participate

COST: Varroa Mite Testing Kits are available from the UMN Bee Squad, MannLake and Brushy Mountain. Participants can provide their own equivalent materials, and some grants may be available. In addition, participants can make their own testing kit based on directions from The University of Minnesota.

OUTREACH: Promotion of Mite-A-Thon will be through local bee clubs, state beekeeping organizations, and national associations (see appendix for examples)

DATA COLLECTION: Participants will test levels of mites present in their hives using a standardized protocol utilizing two common methods of assessment (alcohol wash or powdered sugar roll); and then upload their data, including location, total number of hives, number of hives tested, local habitat, the number of Varroa mites counted from each hive and any subsequent action taken after monitoring. These data will be collected by Bee Informed Partnership and analyzed for publication and dissemination to the participating beekeepers and organizations. The published information will not identify individual participants.

SPONSORS: Sponsorships are being solicited to underwrite costs and grants, as necessary.

CONTACT: 415-362-1137

TO DO: Determine your preferred method of testing for mites and commit to a day for testing, either individually or through beekeeping organizations, and report your data (see above).




Open Hive Day – June 10

Open Hive Day – June 10th

Diane Blais, Androscoggin Beekeepers Club member, will be opening her hives for us on June 10th at 10:00 a.m.  Come, watch and learn!

Bring your veil, gloves, and your curiosity.

Diane is located at: 353 Randall Rd., Lewiston, ME  Her phone is 207-576-7998 if you have questions.

May 2017 ABC Meeting


The next meeting of the Androscoggin Beekeepers Club (ABC) will be held Wednesday, May 10th, Club business will be conducted from 6:30 PM to 7:00 PM followed by the presentation. The meeting will be held at the vestry building of the West Auburn Congregational Church, 811 West Auburn Rd, Auburn, ME 04210. All are welcome.  For more information about the Androscoggin Beekeepers Club, please visit our website at

David Spicer, VP of the Maine State Beekeepers Association, President of the Knox/Lincoln Beekeepers and co-owner of Spicer Bees will be visiting us. 

David and his wife Susan are an educational resource for beekeepers across Maine but especially to those in the mid-coast area.  Come with questions and a desire to learn more about how we can best manage our local hives.
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Stay tuned!   This is the last official meeting of the season.  Open Hive events will be planned and posted.