2022 AGM Reports

Regional Reports

East Kootenays – Lance Cuthill 250-304-6993

Beekeeping from the start of winter, through spring, summer, and now fall has been a challenge for both our area beekeepers and the honey bees. The winter saw Mother Nature create some severe cold (-30c) that lasted several days followed by rapid day temperatures rising to +8c and dropping to -15c at night, none of which was the best for bees. Our spring kept the bees waiting nearly two weeks beyond when the dandelions, pussy willows, and crocus bloom would normally have happened. This meant checking stores and feeding sugar syrup and pollen patties.  At this point, Varroa mites thrived and untreated colonies went steadily downhill in spite of hoping late treatments would revive them. Many beekeepers using imported queens for replacement or making nucs found that early supersedure of the queens was all too common. With queen and mite problems, the honey harvests were a mixture. Healthy hives produced well and others struggled to get enough stores to survive this coming winter. Our present, prolonged warm days with little forage has meant some heavy sugar syrup feeding to light colonies. Covid 19 has left the East Kootenay Beekeepers with no opportunity to get together. Our first meeting is planned to take place shortly after the AGM. Both Bobby and I are really looking forward to attending the AGM, meeting friends, gaining new ideas, and putting Covid out of our minds, at least for a while.

Bobby and I are now, according to BC terminology, “Super Seniors,” by definition, over 80 years old. We recently heard these same seniors in Alberta are called “Coffin Dodgers”

Fraser Valley – Courtney White 604-309-1684

What a year it has been, from an excessively wet spring to a dry extended summer. The Chilliwack, Langley, and Surrey bee clubs have all gone back to regular in person meetings and things feel almost back to normal. The season is finally winding down, though it doesn’t feel like it! Honey yields were up thanks to a nice blackberry flow. Local nucs were scarce this year and selling for up to $275 each. Queen cells stayed in the $9-$11 range with mated queens going close to $50. Wasps were a nightmare in many yards, making inspections difficult. The extended summer weather has given more time to bulk up colonies for winter. A lot of beekeepers are taking advantage of the weather and doing additional mite treatments, oxalic acid vapour has been the favourite followed by Apivar. Fingers crossed that this extra prep time pays off next spring!

North Okanagan – Rick Plantinga 250-712-9496

There is a limited amount of new information since the Fall issue of BeesCene.  The first week of October has had record breaking temperatures.  Fruit harvests are two weeks late. As can be expected, the bees are very active, gathering nectar and pollen (and consuming their winter stores).  The forest fires and smoke we missed in the summer also showed up late. It was good to again participate in the honeybee displays at Armstrong IPE.  The 100th-anniversary display containing numerous photos and newspaper clippings was very well received by hundreds of visitors. Extraction of our club hives and of club members went well.  Indoor meetings are being planned.   As can be expected, the drought resulted in a below-average honey crop, however, seems to have helped with nuc and hive build-up.  As usual, the wasps have been busy removing dead bees from in front of the hives and also invading weak queenless hives. We will be watching later when the guard bees retreat as the weather gets cooler.


Peace River – Kerry Clark 250-782-6646

I expect reports the Beekeeping Summer of 2022  for much of BC will be similar: a cool and wet June and early July, resulting in delayed summer honey flows, but a warm to hot late July, August and September, giving extended honey flows except where forage plants became too dry.  Healthy bee colonies in the Peace had the potential for bumper honey crops above 300 lb., but problems with queens or inadequately controlled varroa in some cases resulted in zero harvestable honey or even colonies failing in mid-summer.  We were pleased that Nuria Morfin of our Tech Transfer Team, supported by some funding from BC Hydro, visited the region twice to gather samples to try to refine varroa treatment thresholds and give a new perspective through RNA analysis, to indicate the difference between healthy and unhealthy bee colonies. We look forward to at least some of us getting back together for a fall annual meeting in Kamloops. I hope we all stay safe and have a great hybrid conference.

Fraser Fort George (Prince George) – Barry Clark 250-967-4141

Here are some bullets to bring you up to date on what’s been happening in Central BC this past year:

  • Winter 21/22: Very Cold and long.
  • Spring: Cold and very wet. The first pollen & nectar sources were a month late.
  • Summer: Still cold and wet into July, then a hot and dry August / September. Honey yields were disappointing.
  • Fall: Record warmth through September and early October, with no precipitation to speak of.
  • Varroa Mites were not a concern through the summer but have really spiked this fall.
  • Winter colony mortality was high.
  • Bees were slow to build numbers in May, June, and early July, then POW colony growth was exceptional. Probably why mites were low, and so was honey production during the main nectar flow.
  • Swarms were common.
  • Wasps and Hornets were a problem for some this year.
  • Honey production was below average.
  • The Prince George Branch was very active this year with the launch of a website for new beekeepers, supplying nucs/packages, field days, events, and now in person meetings starting on October 17th at the College of New Caledonia. (check it out)

This will be my last report as the Regional Rep for Fraser Fort George.  Lyn Smith will be taking over after the AGM.  Thank you for your support over the past few years.  I have enjoyed my time as your representative.

South Vancouver Island – Kate Fraser 250-514-1157

Lower Vancouver Island saw a wet, cold Spring, which directly impacted the bees and their growth and swarming habits.  Splits were not able to re-Queen naturally with any sort of success because Queens were not mating well, or at all.  There were many reports of rogue swarms that ended up on the ground, either in the vicinity of the hive or in one high-profile case, right on a busy sidewalk!   Local Queens have once again been harder to source, and this led to an increase in Ukrainian Queens making the trip over.  As much as we love to support locals, it felt good to support Ukrainian beekeepers.
Honey did not flow as well as last year. The blackberry boom (you read that right: I call it a boom, not a bloom!) was anti-climactic in most areas, although average hives pulled in enough to at least get themselves through Winter.  This will not go down in the annals as a bumper crop year.  As we all say, “It will be better next year!”
Clubs have been getting back together with some regularity but there has been a decided shift in who makes it to the meetings and who doesn’t. As always, the new beekeepers rely on the more seasoned vets to help them learn and grow.  We hope that going into the coming years we can get back to a sense of the way it used to be and we will see diversity in the Island meetings again.

For now, we enjoy an extended summer and hope that Winter doesn’t hit us too quickly, taking the bees by surprise.

Sunshine Coast – Steve Clifford 604-885-9664

Tough to get it right sometimes…..our build-up period this past spring was constant, week after week rainy and cold.  Now that the main honey flow is long gone we have uninterrupted summer-like weather with hardly a cloud in sight.  Might be an understatement to say that our honey crop was “short”……it was a far cry from the timely “heat-dome” of 2021 when we realized 2 or 3 times a normal crop.

Sad to report that Varroa has reared its ugly head….I and others have suffered losses so far and I’m afraid the end result will not be positive.

Our Sunshine Coast Bee Club held a bring-your-own BBQ celebrating the season’s end in late September.  Paul VanWestendorpe was good enough to join us and gave an interesting and timely presentation.  He spoke almost exclusively about this ever-growing contentious issue of reopening the US Border to the importation of California package bees.  He wisely made the point that the fact that Canada is importing 200,000 plus queens with worker bee attendants and not badly needed packages makes little sense. We are in the grips of a serious Stage 5 drought here on the Coast…..our local paper reported a week ago that we were some 16 days away from running out of water.   Any meaningful moisture will be extremely welcome when it does show up.


Thompson Nicola – Murray Willis  250-377-1214

Its hard to believe another year has passed! It will be great to have a more normal AGM this year and I think we are all looking forward to getting together. The beekeeping year has been a little different again in this region, a slow start this spring with lots of rain making it hard get nuc’s made up. We didn’t really have a big dandelion bloom this spring so hive build up was slow as well. Imported queens seem to be a problem, are they coming and how good will they be? A few of us local beekeepers here have slowly started to raise our own queens with fairly good luck. The bees finally got going and built up fast once the weather changed. The honey flow was good but not one of the best, most beekeepers were happy with the overall yield. We have seem more field days this year and hope for more next year. The honey flow was short and if you were not on it you missed it. The price of jars has jumped so the honey prices have gone up as well. Prices range from $10.00 to $12.00 for 500g and $18.00 to $20.00 for 1kg. I don’t think that a lot of small beekeepers have sat down and looked at what it costs per kg. Over all it was a good year of beekeeping and its time to plan for next year.  Happy beekeeping and remember to test and treat for those nasty little mites!

Committee Reports

BCHPA Research Committee report to AGM October 2022

The committee (Kerry Clark, Heather Higo, Liz Huxter, Alison McAfee, Gerry McKee, Nuria Morfin) surveys the membership to determine priorities, considers opportunities for research to address these priorities, and advises BCHPA executives on their decision to support projects.
Projects supported are posted on the BCHPA website at the Education /Research tab https://bchoneyproducers.ca/bchpa-supported-research
The association has over $ 40,000 in resources available to support such projects and the committee is currently engaged in considering a response to a major 5-year project proposal. With BCHPA’s new capability in the Technology Transfer Program, we are considering how these two research efforts will work together.

BCBBA Report – October 2022

My name is Barry Denluck, accepting the position of president, replacing Steve Clifford. We are an independent group within BCHPA, specializing in raising queens and bees. I must thank BCHPA for their continued support, in particular, Dan Mawson for his exceptional management of our website. BCBBA currently has 39 members
We were able to support Alisson McAfee with her ongoing research on queen bee vulnerability to virus by providing queens from around BC at our expense. She is in the process of publishing her results. We at BCBBA are looking forward to supporting Nuria and the growing TTP initiated by BCHPA with continued sharing of our resources. The BC Bee Breeders Education Series 2022, managed by Liz Huxter, was a resounding success. Plans are in progress for the 2023 season. Our queen exchange program initiated by Liz Huxter last year continued proved to be not viable this year due to the late availability of queens. We will continue in 2003.

The BCBBA Annual General Meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 26, 20222 at 7 pm through a zoom format. The positions of Treasurer and First Vice president are open for renewal this year. Details by email to members will follow.

We at BCBBA are aware of the need for more locally produced queens and nucs for the beekeepers of BC. One of our projects this winter to define the process for a new beekeeper building a successful commercial business of producing queens and nucs. The BCBBA can then target support for individual steps within this process.

Barry L Denluck, President BCBBA


BCHPA Environment/Green Initiative Task Force Report October 2022 – Click Here

Executive Reports

President’s Report

This past year as we emerged from pandemic restrictions has been challenging but also very rewarding, as the organization is now about to provide the membership with their first face-to-face meeting in three years, and we have many accomplishments to celebrate!

First is our excellent positive relationship with the provincial Ministry of Agriculture which has supported beekeepers in so many ways – from continuing to engage a Provincial Apiculturist and inspection team, to providing funds for small-scale BeeBC grants, to encouraging us with our Tech Transfer Program plans by engaging an industry specialist (Karina Sakalauskas) to work with us on developing the TTP and by providing the backbone of TTP’s operating funds for the first 3 years.

Our Tech Transfer Program. Under the leadership of Dr. Nuria Morfin, the program is unfolding at a phenomenal pace, engaging beekeepers throughout five regions of the province within just the first field season.  Enabling this is a highly competent Admin person (Becky Miller) to manage things behind the scenes, and a summer intern (Tim Wang) and fall intern (Leilani Pulsifer) who will be continuing to support a strong online presence for the TTP.

The BCHPA is also strengthening our relationship with the BC blueberry growers through mutual support for upcoming research projects under development.  This will benefit both groups, and hopefully lead to better relationships in the field.

The BCHPA has also responded to last fall’s flooding losses and has been working to arrange compensation collected by the BC Agricultural Council to be distributed to affected beekeepers.

The BCHPA has also started to address issues of sustainability, both in maintaining our bee and queen stocks, and around pollination, participating in round tables on the subject, in discussions with our Ministerial partners, and as part of the steering committee for our Tech Transfer Program.

I’m looking forward to an exciting meeting which our BC Minister of Agriculture, Lana Popham, is scheduled to open in person! In addition, we will have two great educational days filled with amazing speakers, including special guest Dr. Jeff Pettis (Apimondia President) providing both insight and inspiration.

At the business meeting we will have several items on the agenda for discussion, including:

  • A letter of support from the BCHPA for the Canadian Honey Council
  • Full financial report with a proposed new budget
  • The need for an increase in our membership dues
  • A discussion of ongoing funding support for our Tech Transfer Team
  • A discussion of issues surrounding a potential border opening for US package imports

Also, in the coming year we will be forming a committee to review our bylaws to determine what updates are needed.

This is our first opportunity to hold an in-person meeting in three years, and our first ever hybrid meeting!  I’m looking forward to connecting with old friends and getting to know some of our newer members this weekend!

Heather Higo – President BCHPA


Past President’s report Oct 2022

BCHPA “Past President” is a voting position in our association’s Executive (= Table Officers) that exists when a President has completed 2 full terms of the position, and after a new President has been elected.  The Past President’s duty is to lend insights gained in their term of office, to the current executive members. The past 2 years for BCHPA have been a time of great challenge owing to the pandemic, as well as great opportunity with the launching of the Technology Transfer Program. I have been very pleased to contribute to addressing these major items as well as the many more routine matters that the Table Officers address over the years. I Thank my fellow members of the association for the opportunity to be involved in these useful activities.

Kind regards, Kerry Clark, Past President, BCHPA


First Vice-President

This year marks eight years of service on the board of the BCHPA as a vice president. From those initial days when President Wayne Neidig asked for help in organizing events and exploring opportunities for expansion, I have watched as the BCHPA has grown in strength and service to its members.

We’ve seen the growing participation of more branches, including North Fraser, Prince George, Capital Region, and North Okanagan. We’ve seen a keen uptake in interest in the craft of beekeeping. There’s also a growing relationship with, and support to,  our branches, and we regularly return of a portion of new members’ BCHPA dues to local clubs to support their activities.

We have brought in new programs, including the Certified Instructors Course, which has had the intended result of raising the quality of education in beginning beekeepers’ classes around B.C.

I am particularly proud of the efforts we’ve made to establish a Tech Transfer Program. One of the first speakers I brought in when I was first elected in 2014 was Les Eccles from the Ontario Beekeepers Association’s TTP, He laid out the path we would need to follow to start a TTP of our own. It would take another half-dozen years of lobbying to make this goal a reality. This last year we started the program, and we now have, in Nuria Morfin, a TTP leader who has already put our program on a solid footing.

Your president, Heather Higo, and I have met regularly with provincial officials on issues ranging from the TTP to key areas affecting beekeepers, including problems in blueberry pollination, access to bee livestock, flood relief for affected apiarists,  protecting the province from invasive pests and diseases and more. We have a stellar relationship with Agriculture Minister Lana Popham, whose support for beekeeping is well known.

Along the way, I have also taken it seriously to increase and expand the quality of the education program we offer at our Semi-Annual and Annual education days. We’ve worked hard to give you access to the best brains out there.

We certainly have had our challenges. The last two years living in a pandemic environment has tested our association’s strengths. It has caused us to change the way we do things. Here is one example: our delivery of online and electronic programming. In 2013 Wayne asked me to report to the BCHPA on the Ontario Beekeepers’ use of live video streaming to engage members who might not otherwise attend meetings. Who could have known that less than a decade later we would all be experts on the use of Zoom, and be yearning to once again meet in person?

This year we’ve particularly benefitted from the conference planning team approach recommended by Dan Mawson. With Julia Common and Ron Glave, our second vice president, and myself, you can be confident in the quality of the education programs we are delivering. I want to thank Dan, Julia and Ron for their considerable insight and support in bringing you quality educational programming.

Jeff Lee, BCHPA First Vice-President


Second Vice President

During my time as the Second Vice President over the past year/ since the Fall AGM last October, I have had the opportunity to be welcomed to the BCHPA executive, participate in regularly scheduled monthly meetings, begin to understand some of the interests and initiatives the BCHPA is actively involved with, and work closely with the conference planning committee. Since I joined the BCHPA, friends and family have asked me “why” I decided to join the BCHPA executive. I believe understanding (and revisiting) our why in our decision-making is particularly important, especially when we are faced with challenges or tough times, and helps guide our intentions by being clear with our motivations.

Joining the BCHPA during the Spring AGM in 2019 was a decision to invest in my passionate interest in beekeeping. In some ways it became a pivotal moment in my life leading to an array of opportunities such as attending Apimondia in Montreal, the Bee Master’s course at UBC, joining the BCBBA executive as secretary for a term, gaining invaluable beekeeping knowledge and experience, and meeting and befriending beekeepers across Canada.

The decision to join the BCHPA as a member, and now on the executive (my why) is based on my intention to invest in advancing my beekeeping knowledge and skills (personal and professional growth) as I grow my small-scale operation from a hobbyist to a full-scale commercial beekeeping operation. At the same time, I can contribute my decades of experience with a plethora of volunteer groups, and corporate management best practices.

I firmly believe we are stronger together, in support of each other, and value opportunities for connection and service.

If you are reading/ hearing this report, then it is apparent you too have made the choice to invest in connecting with our provincial beekeeping organization (BCHPA) for a variety of motivations (why) that fit with your own personal intentions for growth, development, and connection.

As the Second Vice President, I would like to welcome you to the 2022 Fall AGM Executive meeting and educational days and invite you to share your ‘why’ with me and others throughout the conference.

Regards, Ron Glave – Second Vice-president

Secretary Report

It is with much sadness and regret that I step down early as Secretary of the BCHPA due to health and family pressures. I feel like cannot continue and be a helpful addition to the Executive.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time as Secretary this past year. I love watching the growth and expansion of the Tech Transfer Program and have enjoyed being on the “inside” and getting to know the exec members better, participating in the decision-making and the vision of the future of the BCHPA and beekeeping in BC.
I highly encourage everyone to consider running for the BCHPA Exec, specifically the role of Secretary, as it’s a great starting point to enter into a leadership and decision making role. The Association is run on volunteers and needs its members to actively participate in order to represent all of it members across BC and Yukon and continue to thrive going into the future.
Jennifer Dilfer – Secretary


Treasurer Report

CHC Represenative Report – Stan Reist   Click here for a full report

BHW Trust – Click here for a full report


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