This past November, Fran did her usual run to the Jersey Shore to pick up our Blueberry honey. While there, she happened to meet another beekeeper that was particularly interested in the Maryland tags on her truck. After some conversation, she learned that this beekeeper’s son, Ryan (who happened to be the best beekeeper in his brood) had recently moved to Maryland. Fran found that Ryan was living on Kent Island on the Eastern Shore. Our farm, Chesterhaven Beach Farm, just happens to be located on Kent Island. Jersey is a big place— as is Maryland. How is it that two people can be in the same place at just the right time? He told Fran his son was new to the area and missed his time with the bees. Believing strongly that there are really no coincidences in life, I wrote his son Ryan as soon as Fran relayed the story. Shortly thereafter, we met on Chesterhaven Beach Farm to talk bees.
Ryan has been beekeeping since age sixteen, and for the last four years he was away at college in Pennsylvania. While there, he worked for Wayne Farr of Farr apiaries in Jersey shore, PA running around 800-1000 hives annually while in college.
We met on a beautiful, cool day and drove around the property talking and exchanging stories. We made it to the apiary where I was able to point out in each row who was doing well and who wasn’t. I told my stories of swarms this year and noted the strongest row and the weakest. He explained that that the strongest row had not only the most protection (surrounded by trees) but had the first sun exposure of the day. I could see his wheels turning as I told him what my biggest challenges were. We continued talking and I told him about the study that I participated in; I could tell he was intrigued. What I enjoyed most was the constant smile on his face. With Ryan’s passion and modern beekeeping experiences, he can make our apiary a better place for bees. Ryan is excited to get back out in the bee yard and is eager to help us out on Chesterhaven Beach Farm.