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About Wayne’s Bees

Wayne Rich, of Sophia, NC began beekeeping sometime in the 1960’s as a hobby to have honey for his family and pollinate the family farm. He only knew what the older local beekeepers taught him and what he learned from experience. He never medicated a hive in any way. He had the normal die off and the normal swarm catches that were common in those days. By 1987, he had approx. twenty five hives. When the mites showed up he lost all but one hive. That hive survived and begin casting swarms. Some lived, some died. In 2001, Wayne had 5 strong hives. He gave me a swarm from one of them that year. I placed that colony in a yard by itself and began to catch swarms, make splits, use swarm cells to start nucs, and use eggs and larva from that hive to bait trap outs. Of all the colonies I have started from that hive, and it has been many, only one has ever been reported to have died from mites. None, as far as I know, have ever been treated. When I let someone have one, I asked to have them marked and traced, not treated, and report back if any ever died from mites. Only one has ever reported to me that they died from mites.

Wayne passed away Dec. 26th, 2008. Since that time, I have promoted these bees as “Wayne’s bees”!

Beez Needz Beekeeping Supplies

3662 Edgar Rd, Sophia, NC. 27350
336-431-BEEZ (2339)


Business Hours:
Closed Sunday and Monday
Tuesday thru Friday 9am – 5pm  Saturday 9am – 5pm


  1. Rob Jacobs

    My neighbor has had a Wayne’s Bee hive in Guilford County for around 5 years. We have never treated it for varroa mites. It over winters with a smaller cluster than my Italian mutts, then builds in population. It has been a good honey producer, and as it has re-queened over the years, it has kept its mite tolerance.

    I purchased 2 Wayne’s Queens last year, and these colonies seem to be following the same pattern. I was concerned that they would miss the flow this season since it started so early, but they did a nice job of putting up a surplus.

  2. Scott Sievers

    My Waynes bees always amazed me. I was told if I treated them Wally was going to drive up here and beat me… Knowing him I figured he would, so I never treated them. I would check them for mites, and it would stand my hair on end.. I would honestly think, the next time I look at this hive they will be crashing. However, the next time I checked the mite levels, they were very low? I do not know what they were doing with the mite loads, but whatever it is it is impressive. They built up fast and are some of the best producing hives I have.
    I have produced queens here in Iowa from my Waynes bees, and to this point they seem to be doing as well as the original queens I brought home.
    It goes against common sense to give these bees a good review, because when everyone finds out about them I may be unable to get queens myself!
    I will be ordering queens for the spring of 2018. Half the work and great productivity, both in bees and in honey produced. How can you go wrong?

  3. Vandy Vanderford

    I started Bee keeping in May of 2016 and started with 2 hives. By mid June it was obvious that I had probably rolled the queen in 1 of those hives. I knew Wally from a forum on the Web and had read a number of posts with people talking about Waynes bees. Off I went to NC to get a replacement queen from Beez Needz. I met Wally that day and he told me the story written above and only ask that I do not treat the hive the queen was being put in. I did treat my other hive as the population of mites grew in both hives through the summer. By late August the hive with the Waynes Bees queen was virtually mite free while the other hive needed another treatment.

    Both hives overwintered but the Waynes Bees hive grew quickly and strong in the spring. Spring came early here and I fell behind the bees in my good practices. The hive swarmed on me. I caught the swarm and started another hive. About 6 weeks later I split the original hive again and then in late June I spit Swarm hive again.

    I now have 10 hives 4 of which are Waynes Bees. I have had to treat my 6 non Waynes Bees but the 4 hives have maintained very low if any mite counts. From these 4 hives I am extracting over 90 medium frames of honey this week end.

    Very pleased and will not have any other type queen in hives as I move forward.

    Thanks for saving this strain of bees Wally.

  4. Marty Milan

    I requeened 4 of my 5 hives with Wayne’s bees this year. After my recent mite count I was amazed at how few there was with exceptions of one. I will not be treating any of my Wayne’s bee hives , as hard as it is not to. I am anxious to see how they over winter. I am however treating my other colony before the end of fall. I exspect great results with these bees. I can say that the brood pattern from my Wayne’s queens is exceptional. The one Wayne’s hive with high mite counts I thought I was going to lose . At one point it seemed the queen was failing. I let the hive go just to see if it would rebound on its own. My last inspection revealed an 360 degree turn around. Great brood pattern and very active bees. That’s when I did the mite count (sugar roll) 11 mites. As hard as it is not to treat I am going to let them go and see what happens. Thanks wally for your dedication to keep these bees going. If the mites is ever overcome I believe it’ll be solved by the bees tolerance to them, I don’t see the mites just going away. It looks like these bees may be on a path to doing just that.

  5. Matthew Burgoon

    Bought a couple Wayne’s Bees queens shipped by mail in June ’17. I messed up the introduction process; lost one but the other took. I had read the stories and reviews and was pretty excited about these bees so I made some new queens from her in ’17 and a couple more in ’18 before she finally swarmed away. And I have several more colonies which are her granddaughters now. All are treatment free in a very bee-dense (therefore high mite-load) area. I’m going into winter ’18 with the best looking bees I’ve ever had. I’ll order a few more queens from Keith next summer just to “keep it fresh.” These are survivors and they keep surviving!

  6. Ellsworth and Lynda Gaskill

    Bought a Waynes Bees queen in May ’19 to requeen one of our hives. We have been amazed with the growth of this hive. In July ’19 she had 7 1/2 frames of brood in a 8 frames double deep brood area. The growth of this hive has been phenomenal. It is now Sept ’19 and she is still going strong. We still have 5 1/2 frames of brood and she is continuing to back fill the open cells with eggs. Not only has the growth of this hive been strong, they are packing away the stores for the winter. Along with the 2-8 frame deep boxes serving as the brood chamber they have packed away 2 – 8 frame Medium Supers with their winter stores.

    If they winter well, as we expect them to, due to the strength of this hive; we will need to be ready to split this hive at the first sign of any queen swarm cells in the spring.

    Wish there was a way of attaching pictures, the brood pattern is beautiful.

    We are planning on continuing the tradition of no treatments for mites. We will update you in the spring on this hive.


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