June Frame

June Frame

Monday, February 3, 2014

Feb 2, 2014 update

Yesterday was a good day to get into the hives and see what was going on since the temp was around 65 degrees and I haven't actually been 'down' into the frames since shutting them up last winter.  So, here's what I wanted to do, and found ..

H1 - the single deep that I was concerned about for several reasons, but mostly because I wasn't seeing as much activity as the other hives during 'good flying' days.  This is also the hive that I'd placed a pollen patty into last Sunday and not replaced the syrup in the top gallon feeder .  It had 3 to 4 frames of bees, some brood and looked pretty healthy considering what I was afraid of.  I had another hive beside it that I lost last week and was concerned about this one also.  Whenever I removed the top, the bees had consumed approx 90 % of the pollen substitute I'd put in there last week and I had 3+ frames of almost fully capped honey stores.  I won't need to feed this hive any more - thankfully.  Here's some pictures of the pollen substitute, or what's left of it -

this was approx 2" wide and 11" long originally

Hmm - the middle must have tasted better then the ends ..
A close up of the buffet..
 I ended up moving what was left over, and giving them another patty to encourage them to continue building up. 

H2 -
This the single deep, with the 2 4-frame nucs sitting on top.  It has had, until yesterday, a top feeder on it.  They'd stopped taking sugar water and I hadn't really 'fed' them in a couple of weeks.  I also noticed some brood, and 3-4 frames of capped honey in it.  I didn't go down into the bottom box (wish I'd had time) but the bees were occupying both "top" 4-frame nuc boxes so I was encouraged about their capacity at this time.  I removed the top feeder, and replaced with an inner cover and regular top cover.

H3 - the mean bee hive ..

This hive is a single deep hive and was, until recently taking allot of sugar water.  I removed the top feeder and put the remainder out in the yard for everyone else to eat off of.  I noticed 4+ frames of capped honey - so they need to eat some more of their stores so the queen has room to lay.  I also noticed the queen yesterday, she looked kind of 'thin' as compared to previous viewings and don't know if this is normal during an over winter process, or not.  I did though see her dropping a egg into one of the cells.  Of course the bees weren't too happy with me removing their 'roof' and I actually got stung 3 times.  If they decide to supersede her this year, that would be fine with me.  This is actually an offspring of the 'original' queen from the Nuc I got bought last year, and has always been a 'mean' hive for some reason.  If they don't supersede her and they continue to be more hostile, then I might have to re-queen this hive this summer some time.

I also noticed a good bit of flight activity from all 3 hives yesterday and also allot of bees coming back with pollen.  I don't know what's blooming right now, but as long as they do - that's all that matters at this time.

Got our monthly bee club meeting tomorrow, and I'll get the timeline for the other 'package' I ordered, and also get a chance to talk to Danny and determine when I can get my other 3 hives back - from where he over-wintered the queens for me.