Well, the honey side of the apiary continues to grow! Looks like all three of our second split hives from our stellar white queen have made new queens, so if you're counting, we now have 10 marked queens! But I mentioned having 11 in the title didn't I? Yep, so we had noticed a swarm in the pine tree on the teaching side of the apiary, but hadn't had the time or resources to capture it as it was 15+ feet off the ground on a thick, stumpy branch. Finally, on Sunday we decided it was time to do what we could to capture it and after 3 hours of using 2 brushes and a bucket on long poles, we finally felt like we had most of the bees in our hive body. Fingers crossed that that included a laying queen, but even if it didn't, we have plenty of queens to go around. From here on out our main tasks should be harvesting honey, checking and treating for Varroa mites, and bolstering our hives for the winter by distributing our wealth of resources amongst the hives!
You will notice we did some swapping of slightly weaker hives into nuc boxes and slightly stronger hives that had been in nuc boxes into full-sized hives. This is space management based on issues with not having enough drawn comb for all the hives to be full-sized.
Sunday, Hot, Cloudy to Sunny, 80F
Swarm in Trap:
*Hive 9 – Swarm Caught this evening from pine tree*
- did not see queen, but painstakingly moved most bees from high up in pine tree to box using a bucket and brushes on poles; used a lot of
lure (lemongrass oil); bees older and grumpy; had been on tree at least 5 days
- has one frame of brood and eggs from Hive 8
- many bees on brood frame and surrounding frame
- if no queen, will newspaper combine with Nuc 3
- D1 = green
Nuc 2: White Queen
Hive 5 – Yellow Queen Split w/ Dark Queen marked red
Hive 2 – Yellow Queen
Nuc 3 – From White Queen Hive - new red queen
Hive 1 – Previous White Queen Hive - new red queen
Nuc 4 – From White Queen Hive – new red queen
Hive 4 – Swarm Hive w/ Honey-Colored Queen marked red
Hive 3 – White Queen Split Combined with Original White Queen Nuc w/ Queen marked red
Nuc 1 – From 2nd White Queen Split w/ Queen marked red
Hive 6 – Yellow Queen Split w/ Queen marked red
Next Check: Sunday, July 23rd, 2023 at the A2B2 Teaching Apiary next to the Project Grow Garden in the Campus Farm Area of Matthaei Botanical Gardens.
1. Do mite checks on most hives and treat with FormicPro as needed.
2. Harvest more honey from the Flow Hives.
3. Continue to monitor and manage space issues and encourage hives to draw out comb on foundation frames.
What is a Flow Hive?
A Flow Hive is a Langstroth-style hive system with plastic frames which allow honey to be harvested directly from the hive. www.honeyflow.com/pages/how-flow-works