Friday, July 31, 2009

The Bee Club

I forgot to mention this. I missed the meeting for July because of a previous engagement. I tried to alter my schedule but it was not meant to be. The meeting in august will be the 20th. Guess what? I'll be out of town on a family vacation. Rats...

Hopefully I'll be around for the September meeting. But if I was holding my breath I'd be dead by now. Oh well.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Inspection 7/25/9

Mary & Myrina
89 F

Mary - The honey frames that where filled with nectar are now partially filled with brood. Not much but some. Enough to tell me the young queen is very healthy. Perfect brood pattern. Also much of the honey is now capped. So I put that honey super back on top and reinstalled the queen excluder. I then put the undrawn honey super from the top down between the brood boxes. Hoping for similar results. This Plasticell really doesn't do the job.

NO boiling over of Mary during smoking. However she seemed more aggressive than usual. This is honey season so I think it will pass.

Myrina - Still has not drawn any frames. She is still badly understaffed from the late swarm. There is uncapped brood in a weak pattern in the boxes. I'm sure there are also eggs in the boxes but without glasses I can't say positively. Will leave everything alone for now. All I'll do with her is monitor her activity. I did pull out some more bur comb though. Also I put in a longer sceened reducer at the entrance.

I used the syrup water on Myrina again, along with the smoke. Heavy, heavy, heavy spray. I'm very impressed with how well it works on the mean bees.

I've taken to feeding the bees syrup every time it rains. Which as it turns out is almost non-stop. The rains continue here even though we are in our dry season. I saw a few girls up in the Ventilator box on Mary. Hopefully they are propolising all joints finally.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Two Successes!

It worked!
If you recall neither hive ever drew out the frames in the honey supers. So to trick them I placed the honey supers in between the brood boxes. Well, the bees in Mary are now drawing out the frames in the honey super. Most frames are drawn out all the way. The added bonus is that the bees are filling the new frames with honey only. No brood at all.

Mary : Frame # 6 : Beautiful new wax

Fill 'er up!

I tried this trick with both hives. One honey super between two brood boxes. When I checked Myrina I found they had not drawn their frames yet. I will have to wait to see what happens there. It looks like I'll have a late honey harvest but at least I'll have one. Even 30lbs. Will make my day.

This week I also put a second honey super on top of each hive. I thought that just because the bees refused the first two supers doesn't mean they will refuse the second two. These two new supers are still empty. No drawn comb. This puts much space in each hive yet I've seen no problems.

Myrina is still short handed due to the late Swarm. As usual I can never find my Queens but there is good sign that Myrina has one. I tried to take a picture of a frame. I hoped that if I zoomed into the image I could see new larva. No luck though. The flash masked the bottom of every cell with a reflection. I must get a hand lens.

Myrina's brood in top brood box

The second success is the ventilation tops. Since I put them on the bees have stopped bearding during the days & evenings. I still don't know what great difference it makes but I plan to find out at the up coming meeting.

The Ventilator above the inner cover
View from the back