By Kimberly Pistone
RUSSIA – Busy Bee Apiaries began as a hobby for owner Scot Bruns. Three years ago Bruns became interested in beekeeping while watching a tv show, then a few months later he serendipitously discovered a swarm of bees in one of his bushes. He went to Tractor Supply Company, bought a beehive and the other necessary equipment, caught the bees, and the established them in his first hive.
Currently Bruns has 10 hives – soon to be 15 or more once he splits his current hives. Each hive produces almost 4 gallons of honey each year, equivalent to approximately 80 8-unce jars of honey from each hive.
Bruns offers a rescue service to people who find a bee swarm and want it removed. Spring is when beehives split. The beehive gets too crowded and the queen will abscond with half of the workers. When this happens, the bees will search for a new home. These swarms can look scary, but the bees are typically calm during these events. Bruns can come and remove the swarm.
Busy Bee Apiaries also offer pollination services. If a local farmer or vineyard wants some beehives on their property to help with their pollination, Bruns can meet that need. He still manages and takes care of the hives, checking on them on a regular basis, so this is an easy way for people to have extra pollinators on their property.
Bruns finds the bees fascinating. He enjoys opening a beehive and seeing the tens of thousands bees all buzzing. Bruns also enjoys the educational aspects of beekeeping. He said, “It is fun to have people ask questions and want to learn more about bees.”
Busy Bee Apiaries offers raw honey- both regular and flavored. Flavors include hot cayenne, cinnamon, cocoa, mint, orange and vanilla. Bruns says it is hard to pick a favorite, but he enjoys putting cinnamon, orange or cocoa honey on his vanilla ice cream.
All of these products, as well as information about pollination and rescue services, can be found online at www.busybeeapiaries.org. A few local stores also carry Busy Bees Apiaries honey, including Johns IGA in Versailles, Winners Meats in Osgood, and Little Lilacs Grange Hall in Webster. Busy Bee Apiaries can also be found on Facebook.