BEEKEEPING IN THE NORTHEAST - An account of my beekeeping, not a treatise of expertise, but for friends & family who wish to keep bees vicariously through me, and for the occasional apiarist passer-by.

Monday, June 6, 2011

June Hive Inspections

My three hives have been buzzing along.

Backyard Lavender 8 frame hive:
ANT INVASION! So a colony of ants moved in! I went in to replace the bag of syrup I made that was beginning to show mold. Here is the video:

Italian Over-Wintered Hive: and Ferncroft 8 frame Canadians:
I needed to return to the Italian Ferncroft hive to replace the homasote board that helps absorb moisture, helping the bees fend off hive humidity. This is the hive I did the reversal on May 26th, 10 days earlier, (see video one-blog below) and anticipated that one of the honey supers may be ready to harvest.

I've never harvested honey before so decided on the spot to separate it from the rest of the hive by placing a new super full of new frames and beeswax foundation between it and the over-wintered hive deep that the bees seemed to have full of nectar and were busy drying when last I opened the hive. There were many drones...this is new. I have concerns that this strategy is based solely on the assumption that the queen is in the bottom of the hive....that she survived the upheaval of the hive reversal. Here is the video:

About Drone Bees - from Wikipedia:
Drone bees (left) are male bees characterized
by their larger eyes, larger bodies (though the queen - pictured right with
daughter worker bees - is usually even bigger), and stouter abdomens. They
do not sting, but make a lot of noise which serves to ward off intruders.
They live only to eat and breed. They live about 90 we'll be seeing
these same drones around for the summer. The girls kick them out to fend
for themselves in the winter. The entire developmental period is 24
these drones at the Italian hive on Ferncroft were already in the making
when I did the hive reversal...Whew!

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