Hive 2 Was Varoaa shook swarmed during August 2017
January 23rd. First visit of the year. It was a warm day getting briefly to 12 degrees centigrade and the bees were flying. I took the opportunity to re-organise the sticky fondand on the crown board - to see video.
February 17th. More fondant had been eaten - so more given. - to see video.
March 6th. After a spell of bad weather - hard frosts at night and several days of snow the bees seem fine and are still eating the fondant to see video.
March 21st. We have had another weekend of cold weather and snow since my last video - but today the weather was warm enough for the bees to be flying and taking in pollen. The cherry plum is coming into bloom. I moved the super from under the brood box to above it and put the brood box on the floor after giving the floor a quick scrape. - to see video.
April 7th. A nice warm day for the first inspection of the year. Frames of eggs and brood building up nicely. The bees have been eating fondant all winter but now as we move into spring I'm changing to syrup that they can put into the empty brood frames. -- to see video
April 14th. Another sunny afternoon. With a week of fine weather forecast for next week I put in a frame of foundation as the start of my queen rearing for this year. And removed a frame of brood for the nuc in the corner. - to see video
April 21st. Another sunny afternoon a week later than my last visit and a week in which we have had some very hot days. Has the start to my queen rearing 2018 begun succesully? Yes and no. The fact that the feed wasn't taken by last week's inspection should have allerted me to a change inside the colony and if I had noticed it I should then have done a full inspection. Maybe the removal of the super made the bees decide to make their queen cells a week in advance of my plans, or maybe the queen was just getting too old for them and they took the first opportunity to make queen cells. However, my introduced frame was left untouched and I found open queen cells. And some closed queen cells too - so I was able to make up a nuc. - to see video
May 3rd. I didn't open the hive up - but judging by the bees going in the entrance this hive has a new queen. - to see video
May 7th Patience is required and on this accassion wasn't applied. There were no eggs in the frames - so no laying queen and the box should not have been opened until the 11th at the arliest to see video. I'm not going to make the same mistake with the nuc box that had the queen cells put in it. It had drones flying into the nuc box where the queen cells were put - did it end up with the virgin queens as well? - to see video 12th May New queen laying. Queen excluder put on and super put on. to see video
May 21st. Just a quick inspection to ensure that the queen is in fact laying OK. She was laying but the brood is a bit pepper pot and not an even lay. As she is a very early queen it is possible that she is not as well mated as a queen mating now would be. to see video
June 6th. A quick insopection to see how the queen is laying now to see video
June 25th. One frame of brood stolen to make up a nuc with a frame of queen cells from hive one. Queen laying OK eggs and brood in all stages and no shortage of stores. No honey being made at this time. to see video
July 17th. A quick peek to see if honey is being made - no honey made. to see video
July 25th. First stage brood removal. to see video
1st August. Second stage brood removal to see video
11th August. Ashforth feeder removed. Supers put on to see video