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Pre-trip bee check

June 10, 2009

aastMy handsome assistant and I did a quick bee check and gave them more boxes just in case there is a population explosion or great influx of nectar in the next two weeks.

As you may recall, we put another deep box on each hive at the DSCF6278end of May.  We put a shallower box (called a honey super) on each hive last week, but I wasn’t sure that would be enough extra room for the hives, especially the stronger one.  If the bees get crowded they will swarm, that is some goodly percentage will take off for a new hive.  I’d rather avoid that – right now the more bees, the more honey.  This is how the hives looked with their 3 boxes.

Today my son and I took a look to see how they were doing.  Both hives were going great.  The front hive, which has fewer bees, had a small crowd flying around the front.  This is the play flying done by new worker bees as they learn to recognize the hive before going off to forage.  This was a good sign, a sign that new bees are still emerging.

peakWe took off the covers and peered in.  The honey supers on top are still empty, as I expected, but I was glad to see lots of activity in the box below.  Here’s a shot between honey super frames to the frame below.  We didn’t disturb them by taking off boxes and pulling out frames, but it looks as if they have done a good job making comb on many of the frames in the 2nd deep box. 

Well, if this hive, the weaker of the two was doing this well we could hardly wait to see how the stronger hive was doing. 

bees belowWe weren’t disappointed.  Looking between the honey super frames we could see bees on the tops of every frame in the deep box.  These bees would be in the honey super next week!  Good thing we were putting another box on.

 

 

2 deeps 2 supersNow the hives are as tall as I can make them before buying more woodware (as they call it in the bee-biz).  It will be great to see how much they accomplish while we’re on vacation.

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