Hive Inspection 9/2

Time for a hive update! One clue as to how they are doing…I need to make some frames! Melissa is doing marvelously and Demeter is growing and growing. I forgot to take my sheet to mark down what I saw so I had to use my fingers in the pictures to keep track of how many brood and honey frames they had. I wish I could do audio inspections somehow but I really don’t want to get my iPhone dirty.

I case you’re wondering about the hornet sting, that baby itched through Saturday, though I could use my hand and the itching lessened on Sunday. On Monday, all reminders of it were gone. In fact, I had to do the hive inspection on Friday with “the claw”, FUN.

The results:

I cannot believe how many bees are in Melissa, Queen Maria is doing her job admirably. Wait until you see the brood frames!

Melissa

  •      Set-up: One deep, one full medium super (honey)
  •      Number of frames being worked: 8 (increased)
  •      Queen spotted: Yes
  •      Frames of brood: 4 solidly packed (increased)
  •      Type of brood: larvae, capped, eggs
  •      Frames of bees: 6 on a sunny day
  •      Food: 2 Quart jars, one 1/4 full, the other empty. Refilled. Pollen patty almost gone, gave them a fresh one.
  •      Beetle trap: lots of beetles. Ugh.

Overall Impression: Fantastic. The queen is laying up a storm (at least compared to how it was at first). As more bees are produced, more are available to care for the young which allows the queen to lay more eggs.

Plan: Now the goal is to get them into a second deep. Though they have a super full of honey, in our area they recommend 2 deeps going into winter. I would like both hives to have 2 deeps and a medium.

You can see the increase in the bee population.

Look at all that brood! There were 4 frames like this.

Pretty pollen, what lovely variety.

You can see the poor bees that I dropped oil onto. When I first saw them I freaked out and thought I had some mutant bees or something had invaded the hive. Steven reminded me that I had spilled a little oil on that frame when taking up the beetle traps.

Mistakes I made this time: forgot to replace the beetle traps. When taking up the black ones you have to be very careful due to the oil potentially spilling. But the bees propolize the traps which only makes it more difficult to remove them. I want to have 2 traps per box so that would be 6 traps per hive if they grow as I hope.

Demeter

  •      Set-up: Two deeps and one medium super
  •      Number of frames being worked: 8 (increased) top deep, 8 bottom (we moved the undrawn frames next to drawn frames).
  •      Queen spotted: Yes
  •      Frames of brood: 3 in the top (increase), at least 3 in the bottom
  •      Type of brood: larvae, capped, eggs
  •      Frames of bees: at least 2 deeps.
  •      Food: empty, refilled hive top feeder. Pollen patty almost completely gone.
  •      Beetle trap: bunches

Overall Impression: Doing great! Lots of brood, lots of stores. I may need to assemble medium frames for them.

Plan: Keep feeding until they stop taking it. Add more beetle traps. Treat the ground around the hive.

This is a "just in case" queen cup. The bees often have these on hand to use if needed. You should never knock these down.

This is the honey super, quite a few bees in here.

Lots of bees in the top deep. More and more bees all the time!

Bright yellow pollen on the girl in the middle of the picture.

Lovely white cappings. This is sugar syrup.

Bees, bees and more bees!

Dead hive beetles. Nasty little buggers, if the hive is weak they can really take over and slime the frames. You should see pictures of it, it's so horrible.

I am very satisfied with the progression of these hives. I sincerely hope I won’t have to feed them again next year.

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