Thursday, May 23, 2013
Friday, May 10, 2013
It's a rainy day in the apiary and the bees aren't flying around too much,
so I decided to check the monitor boards we keep beneath the screened bottom boards
to see if the bees had cast off any varroa mites.
This is from the southern hive.
My untrained eyes didn't note any mites,
but I was fascinated to see the ridge patterns of cast off
something or another. The ridge pattern slightly above the midline
corresponds with approximately where we placed the queen.
There is another ridge pattern on the bottom edge of the board.
I can only surmise the bees are busy there, too.
We can't inspect inside the hive for a couple more weeks,
so I guess we'll find out then.
This is the monitor board from the northern hive.
Blogger insisted on flipping it.
Anyway, the heavy ridging seen on the southern hive isn't present.
There is somewhat of an accumulation of material on the left side
and also toward the right edge.
I also didn't notice any varroa mites on this board.
Thursday, May 09, 2013
This morning I took the entrance reducers off the hives.
The reducers help the bees keep strangers out until they
build up enough guard bees to protect the entrance,
but yesterday I noticed there was quite the line waiting to
come into the hive. Kind of like Whole Foods on opening day.
If you click on this picture you'll be able to see
I've circled a couple of bees carrying pollen in on the
baskets on their legs. Pollen is protein and it's
essential for the rearing of brood. I've given them pollen patties
inside the hive, but natural is better. Go bees!
Wednesday, May 08, 2013
The hives got smaller!
Last evening Gene and I removed the bottom hive bodies
that were holding the packages of bees.
The bees have now all left the packages and moved
upward to be with their queen on the frames of wax foundation.
This is the southern hive around 10:30 a.m.
The bees are becoming active,
coming in and out of the entrance.
The northern hive at the same time was a little busier today.
Yesterday the southern hive became active earlier.
The ladies let me get fairly close.
Today they're doing some orientation flights.
I hope Indiana suits them.