The girls have had a great week with temp's in the 70's. The Red Maples & Daffodils have bloomed to start the pollen season. The pollen of which seems pale in color. All the rain we had from December to now has replenished the creek and both seep ponds. So it looks like the year will start well enough.
Mary. The Apistan strips have been in place for 45 days so today I took them out. She has changed some, I think for the better. First she had a nice clump of brood near the center of the Winter bee mass. This was unfortunately ripped apart when I separated the hive bodies. Yet that brood alone was more than I saw back in Fall when I tried to re-Queen. Also, The response to smoke has improved. instead of all the bees scrambling out of the hive onto the ground they mostly stayed inside. Some still bailed but only a few. The great majority went deeper into the hive looking for honey. That is the response I like to see. It's more like the productive hives I had last Summer. Added to her was a new telescoping cover. I am very suspicious of a ventilation problem in Mary. As I opened her up I noticed that the bees were already venting on the bottom board. The other hive was having no such problem. Also there was the Winter moisture issue. I had a good bit of water condense in the hive and spill out the opening.
Myrina. Again the Apistan strips came out. She is still the same. I detected no problems in her and she is still mean. Every time I hit them with smoke they take to the air to find the culprit. I could not find any stingers in my suit so she seams at least docile. Just aggressively docile!? I had to stop smoking her just to put the hives back together so no bees would be crushed.
Now is the time for any medications to be used. This is the first time I'll be doing that. I've read some and talked some to local keepers. I am somewhat nervous about it but should start soon.
The hives generally looked good. The girls had plenty of honey left in reserve. My occasional feedings with the entrance feeders worked well. I had purchased a bag of Megabee last fall to make patties. They never finished the few I gave them. I may give them the rest of the bag as dry this Spring to get rid of it.
Now it time to figure out what I want to do this year.