Thursday, November 29, 2007

Putting the girls to the test.

The temperature got up to 60 today so my mentor came over and we went inside again. Let me mention the the overall goal is to get the bees off of his comb and onto my frames/comb. When we opened the hive the frames were located as shown below.

The darker frames are the ones that we transferred over from my mentor's Nuc. Note in this picture the two lighter frames in between the darker frames. These are the frames that the bees are drawing comb on. At the end of the day we put these two lighter frames in the middle and moved the two middle frames outside of them. The hope is that the bees will move the main brood area to these two newly formed comb. That means the queen will have to begin laying in the new comb. At this point all that is in the new comb is honey and pollen - we'll see!
To complete the story, the outer two dark frames were removed from the bottom hive. One was completely taken out, the other was put up in the feeder box. Again, the hope is that the bees will move from this frames/comb down to the main hive and get busy on the new comb.

Here is a closeup the bees down in the brood area.

Below is a picture of the hive as we were moving the frames around. You can see that we have moved the two dark frames in the center apart and are placing the newly drawn combs into the center.

Also, we had to use the smoker today. I don't know if it was the chillier weather or what, but the girls were feisty!

Well, we will keep feeding and hope for the best :)

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Just Feedin'

Last Wednesday before leaving for Thanksgiving I replaced the pint feeder. Today, I replaced both of them. They are still feeding well.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

A little warm up

Well it warmed up a little today (55) and the bees took advantage of it. They were out and about. My son had replaced the pint jar yesterday so I just replace the quart today - all seemed well.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Cold and Rainy

We had beautiful weather through yesterday and the bees took advantage of it. The most activity I have seen at the new hive. Today, however is another story. The temperature dropped about 20 degrees and the rain came in. When I checked on the hive this afternoon it was completely quiet, no activity at the entrance and two dead bees laying there. I am assuming they are just hunkering down in the weather.

They had almost emptied the feeders, I will probably refill them tomorrow.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The bees are working hard!

We had a bump of nice weather this afternoon, and my mentor came over, so we took a peak under the hood. Actually before he came I noticed that the bees were much more active today than I had seen them in weeks, lots of coming and going at the hive entrance.

When we moved the frames over from the Nuc we placed a new empty frame between some of the old frames so that hopefully they would pull some new comb. Well - they did. We had one side of the new frame almost fully pulled with new comb, they were also busy filling it with honey and even had some capped.

There were some new eggs, and the brood still seemed intact. All in all the bees were doing incredibly well.

We went ahead and moved another new foundation into the brood area to see what the girls will do.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Feeding time

Just trying to keep track of when I am feeding them. Put in a quart and a pint of new syrup today. Filling jar a little more than half with sugar and then filling with water to dissolve. Bees were messing around outside some, but still pretty quiet.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


Well it has gotten chilly (50's during the day and colder at night) and the girls are staying inside. Very little activity outside. They are also slowing down on taking syrup. It must be winter!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Sugar High?

Before my father left, we switched the single pint jar to a pint and a quart jar. So, I did not have to refill it as often. The bees finished the quart and the pint bone-dry in four days. I refilled the quart last night and they have not drink a fourth of it in a day.

They seem to be calmer. I am not sure if it is the colder weather that has hit us, the bigger hive, or the amount of sugar water we are giving them. I have only seen about three bees (outside of the hive) in this four day span, which seems quite odd to me.