Colorado Beekeepers

I’m just wanting to start a Colorado forum for fellow Flow Hive purchasers and any other beekeeping talk that might be of interest to Flow hivers.

We kept bees years ago, but due to bear issues several years in a row, quit. Now we’re excited to try again. We now have gardens in stud fencing and electric fencing and will put hive within one of those areas.

We attended a talk recently by Beth Conrey, President of Colorado State Beekeepers Association, and her main emphasis is “Food for Bees”. Lots of hives could be started, but if no food, then no honey or bees. And the food - i.e. flowers/pollen - comes from untreated seed plant starts. Like be wary of flower purchases from places like Home Depot, etc. There can be large landscapes of flowers, but do you see bees visiting?

Plant bee friendly plants. We have lots of “Walker’s Low” Catnip which is loaded summer-long with bees, wild bees and bumble bees.

Go to the CSBA website,, to learn more.

I am interested in where to purchase bees.


Hello Karey! I am in Kiowa and have been a beekeeper for one week and 3 days. I have syrup in the hive but the bees have not touched it. They’re too busy with all the wildflowers blooming around us. I installed in a top bar hive but will be picking up a Lang on Wednesday. I got in on the early bird Flow order and expect my 3 Flow inserts this fall. I ordered my package for the top bar from Apis in Grand Junction and the bees arrived in great shape. There are a couple more places that I know of near Denver to get a package but they are completely sold out with waiting lists. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to get a package for my new hive locally, so I’m considering ordering one and having it shipped. Not sure if I want to do that or just wait until next spring. Good luck getting back into bees! Since you have to deal with bears, I’m going to guess that you’re located somewhere near Evergreen. :slight_smile:


Hello Colorado bee keepers!
I’m down in southern Colorado between Colorado Springs and Pueblo.
‘Will’ be a first time bee keeper next spring I presume unless the equipment gets here earlier.
But this gives me a lot of time to educate myself and connect with our El Paso County bee keepers club.
Hope we get more Colorado members as this progresses!


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Greetings. I will be a first time bee keeper next year if the equipment arrives as scheduled. We are in the Conifer area at 8500’ elevation, so it will be an adventure to see if it works out. As of now, I am leaning toward Carni’s due to the elevation. Any recommendations for a supplier and when to order for Spring 2016?

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Hello Colorado people,
I am at 7,00 ft. near Gardner, Huerfano County. I have been contemplating a top bar hive for a few years now, but the Flow hive was an idea too good to pass up. Any suggestions on where and when to order bees for next spring? I’m retired and this could be the beginning of a great new hobby.

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What is “Carni’s” philandjana? I’m missing something. Is this a bee supplier?

I too am still wondering where to get bees from. So far, I think early orders are required, like maybe even midwinter before being sold out. I have a friend who’s lost 2 new hive set ups in Conifer. She’s at 9,000ft - the first being a bear. This year’s was due to this weird May weather and too cold (also possibly no food with no flowers yet!)

I’d like to get fairly local bees, wondering if acclimation could help. We also have a friend in Parker, almost to Franktown, that had someone connected to 4H put a hive on their property, and did that to get bees in a varity of places. I think I’ll talk to him.

I am KellySaw1 in Evergreen at 8,000ft. Kelly, when did you get your bees from Grand Junction? Timing for bees getting settled in well with honey supply for their food is going to be a biggy - summer only really being 3 months! Every year is so different - like what will this summer be like?

I recently joined Pikes Peak Beekeepers Association, and PPBA has a Facebook Group you can then also join.
I am located in the southern Pikes Peak Region. I am a proud member of CSBA. Moz, my wife, and I recommend you order bees through Buckley (, in Colorado Springs. Apis Hive & Honey bee providers we do NOT recommend. Last year Apis supplied us with two healthy bee boxes in April, 2014, but this April, 2015, the Apis new bee box we got from them died within days, ‘heat exposure’ while in transit from Apis being what killed them.
Love Bees, theOZer

Bought a property in Pagosa Springs and building a barn this year; house a bit later. I want to get started in beekeeping, so I ordered a Flow Set up. Looking for ideas/opinions/experience on when the best nectar flows occur, mitigating bear problems, and any other high altitude advice on keeping bees. Excited to get going on the new homestead!

Apparently there’s lots of bee varieties, but shortly they’re all a mix. This site has a lot of info -

Still don’t know where I’m going to order bees from . . .

I’d venture it’s slang for “Carniolan” bees… But don’t hold me to it.

Tim scatter wildflower seed around. You’ll see what takes, and the bees will be appreciative of the variety in their nectar diet.
If you check the local agriculture bureau in your area, you can get a better idea of the native flora.
You are going to have SUCH fun!!!

Karey, if you are still “bee-less,” contact your local bee keepers, and ask your local fire department who they call for swarm removal, and contact them.

Let them know you are a new beekeeper, and wanting to ‘adopt some girls.’ They may have a waiting list, they may not. Hopefully one of them will get your info to contact you when they get a swarm, and you’ll be in business.

Carnica or “Carni” Yes Slang for Carniolan - My bees are Carniolan

Carniolans are lovely gentle bees, ideal for a beginner.
They have a tendency to swarm easily and are better suited to a bigger brood box, so ideal for a Lang.
Their only downside is that subsequent generations can become aggressive but of course that does depend on your neighbours’ bees.
You can overcome this by re-queening every year but at £50 a pop it’s bit expensive.
I started with a Carniolan queen. Her daughter’s colony was OK her granddaughter’s very defensive and the following generation virtually unworkable. I stuck with it and the next queen was fine as by then the bees were all practically local Heinz 57.
I now keep black Welsh bees and Buckfast. The Buckie crosses can be difficult but they don’t swarm every year :smile:

Yeah! I got my Flow Hive. Now to track down bee source for this spring!

Not sure where you are in the state, but a quick Google search turned up these:
and some more sources here:

If I were you, I would order very soon. Many California apiaries are already sold out of nucs for 2016! :anguished:


I have my flow hive as well!!! First application of tung oil is already on, and waiting to put on another coat. Also waiting to order bees. Very excited!!!

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Avoid Apis - They import their bees from California, and do not guarantee they will survive.

We had good luck the first year, but a horrid experience last year. The bees were stressed, overheated, and died within 72 hours. Apis fought very hard to not refund us, saying their importer from California refused to reimburse them…

We got our money back, but it left a very bad taste in our mouths, bee-wise.

Don’t go by Google Searches except as a very loose direction pointer.
Contact your local Beekeeper’s Association, and ask them for suppliers.

Also, ask the supplier if the bees are meant for commercial, or hobbiest use.
Commercial bees have been treated for disease, and are conditioned to be continuously treated. Many new beeks lose their colonies because they buy Commercial bees, don’t treat, and the bees die.


Can you expand on that, please?
I’ve never heard of such a thing here in the UK