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Rahmlow, H. J. (ed.) / Wisconsin horticulture
Vol. XXX (September 1939/July-August 1940)

Wisconsin horticulture, vol. 30, no. 6: February, 1940,   pp. [145]-176


Page 175

 
WISCONSIN  HORTICULTURE 
      THE BEE CENSUS 
 W ISCONSIN beekeepers are 
      urged to help the U. S. Cen- 
 sus enumerators this year in or- 
 der that we can obtain a complete 
 and accurate bee census. 
   Many times we have heard 
 that the estimate of the number 
 of beekeepers, the number of 
 colonies, and amount of honey 
 produced is largely guess work. 
 Perhaps it is. In 1940 a U. S. 
 census will be taken. Enumera- 
 tors will be required to ask the 
 farmer: 
   1. The number of bees kept onl 
 his farm belonging to people liv- 
 ing elsewhere. 
 2. Number of hives of bees 
 owned by him on his farm or 
 elsewhere. 
 3. Number of pounds of honey 
 produced by his bees in 1939. 
 Other questions will be asked. 
 We understand that census tak- 
 ers are very busy and have a 
 great deal of information to ask 
 fcr, and that there is a possibil- 
 ity that they will slide over the 
 questions about bees. Every bee- 
 keeper should therefore impress 
 upon the enumerator the need for 
 a careful census of bees and 
 honey. 
 Speak to your census taker 
 about it. 
    Chicago Market Report 
  Comb honey, supplies light; 
demand slow. Central western 
White Clover, cellophane-wrap- 
ped, few sales at $2.50 per case. 
  Extracted, supplies moderate; 
demand slow. Sales to bakers 
and other large users in cases of 
2, 60-lb. cans, Centralwestern, 
Mixed clovers white, 5I2-6c per 
lb. Light amber, 5-5y2c per lb. 5- 
lb. pails mixed clovers white, 
$4.50-$4.75 per doz. Few at $5.00. 
  Beeswax, market slightly 
stronger. Dealers paying 23-25c 
per lb. Few best lots 25c deliv- 
ered Chicago. 
Review Of The 1939 Season 
           By the U. S. Department of Agriculture 
T HE 1939 season was featured 
    by the exceptionally spotted 
 nature of the crop and the un- 
 usually warm weather, with lack 
 of precipitation, which contrib- 
 uted to the irregular yield of 
 honey but which also aided in al- 
 lowing bees to fly almost to the 
 end of the year. 
   Early in the season, with plant 
 1prospects generally encouraging 
 over a wide area in the North, an 
 average crop of honey was an- 
 ticipated. Yet as the season ad- 
 vanced widely unfavorable wea- 
 ther conditions and insects re- 
 duced the hoped-for output of 
 honey in many areas, and the 
 crop is reported by the trade as 
 being at least 15 per cent smaller 
 than that of 1938. 
   Abnormally hot weather dur- 
 ing the summer, with lack of 
 rainfall, sharply cut the early 
 prospects for a crop of White 
 honey in the White Clover Belt, 
 ranging from New York south- 
 westward through Ohio, Indiana, 
 and Illinois. The same condi- 
 tions, with the addition of count- 
 less millions of grasshoppers and 
 alfalfa weevils, were effective in 
 reducing the yield also of Sweet 
 clover-Alfalfa honey in the In- 
 termountain  States. California, 
 normally the leading producing 
 State in the country, had one of 
 the shortest crops in years, es- 
 pecially in the southern part of 
 the State, where the crop of Or- 
 ange honey was perhaps 30 per 
 cent of normal and the White 
 Wage output even less. The heav- 
 iest crops of honey this season 
 were apparently produced in the 
 eastern portion of the Plains 
 States. Many beekeepers in Iowa, 
 Eastern Nebraska, and Eastern 
 Kansas, for example, reported 
 yields of White Clover and White 
 Sweet-clover  ranging  100-200 
pounds to the colony or more, and 
occasional beekeepers in Michi- 
gan and other leading States 
also reported high yields. The 
spotted nature of the crop is il- 
lustrated in the fact that in the 
central and western portions of 
some of the Plains States that 
yielded so well along the eastern 
border, some beekeepers secured 
almost no surplus. 
         Good Care Paid 
   Giving careful attention to the 
 colonies was a profitable under- 
 taking. Even in areas where the 
 aggregate yield was below nor- 
 mal, numerous individual bee- 
 keepers reported a good crop of 
 honey. It is noticeable that good 
 yields in such areas were usual- 
 ly in the yards of beekeepers 
 who took especially good care of 
 their hives and brought them to 
 full strength early in the season. 
 Even in the Plains States the 
 highest yields of honey were re- 
 ported by beekeepers whose bees 
 were ready to gather in nectar 
 at the very start of the season. 
 Producers of package bees and 
 queens had their most disastrous 
 season in years. Domestic bee- 
 keepers made fewer inquiries 
 for package bees and queens than 
 usual, though Canadian beekeep- 
 ers bought packages freely. In 
 spite of the rather unfortunate 
 season, however, a million pack- 
 age bees and nearly 200 thousand 
 queen bees were sold last season. 
 The carryover of old crop 
 honey into the 1939 season was 
 heavier than normal, especially 
 in the Pacific Northwest and in 
 portions of the Mountain States 
 and the Upper Clover Belt. This 
 old crop honey continued to sell 
at low prices even after new crop 
honey came on the market, and 
although the crop of 1939 was 
relatively short the market for 
new honey was affected by the 
honey carried over and the prices 
at which it was moving. 
February, 1940 
175 


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