Post harvest storage-reprinted from Nov newsletter

Post-harvest Storage

Keys to success

Storing harvested and cleaned mason bee cocoons is easy when 2 facts are taken into consideration:

  • Keep other animals from eating cocoons
  • Store in a cold place with approx. 70% humidity for two months to ensure proper overwintering.
1.  Storing cocoons outside works well when outside humidity is at least 60% and winter temperatures dip around or below freezing for about 2 months.  The key to success is protection from other animals.  Our Beediverse Hatching box is made from solid wood and keeps animals out.  This method works well until temperatures go over 2-4C.  Before temperatures go above this range, rotate lid of hatching box and bees can emerge as temperatures rise

2.  Storing bees in a fridge at 2-4 C keeps bees hibernating until you want bees to start pollinating.  Keeping humidity above 70% is the key to success. Our Beediverse Humidity cooler  has a  compartment for water and this makes it easy to keep humidity at the right level when storage is inside a fridge.

3.  For temporary storage after candling, our candling dish is the tool to use.  Dishes can be stacked until setting cocoons into a storage system.

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