Saturday, May 31, 2008
I need to order some supplies~ more foundation, a frame grip, pollen trap, mite count tray, lemon oil or swarm lure and smoker fuel (because I just can't get that damn thing to stay lit).
Friday, May 30, 2008
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
I have inserted my frames in my hive according to the theory of Housel positioning. This is taken from May 2006 newsletter, Northern Lights, The Newsletter of the North Devon Branch of the British Beekeepers Association.
Whilst examining wild comb, a gent named Michael Housel made the observation that, in wild comb, bees position cells on opposite sides of the comb in a particular way, and that therefore in providing foundation for comb building, we beekeepers should copy that positioning.
This positioning all depends on the "Y" formation viewed at the bottom of each cell. To understand this fully, you will need to have a sheet of foundation in front of you (or drawn comb) – then all will be revealed.
On one side of the foundation, if you look at the bottom of the indentations that will form the new cells, the faint lines in the bottom of each cell will either show a "Y" pattern or an inverted "Y" pattern. Have a look at the figures below. Now turn the sheet around (sideways, don’t flip it up the other way) and you will see that, on the other side, the "Ys" are the opposite way up.
The last time I tried this method I found that the brood still was clustered towards the left side of the hive, which is next to my white house. Maybe the heat reflecting from the house was more alluring then the position of the Y?
I have marked the inverted Y's with a I for inner and inverted. I will try it again and see what happens.
Monday, May 26, 2008
This isn't really ideal, I believe. Now I have to wait for the new queen to mate and start laying. Crap! Maybe I shouldn't have put the new brood chamber on if they are going to be loosing numbers till the new brood started to emerge.
Saturday, May 24, 2008
Thursday, May 22, 2008
My beekeeping friend John sent me this wonderful link from W. Virgina University about research on essential oil treatments for mite control.
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
I opened the hive body today for the second time since installation. I didn't see the queen, but did see eggs, larvae, pollen, mostly uncapped honey, lots of capped drone cells and what I believe to be two queen cells. About 7 frames are drawn out, I believe I will wait another week to add another hive body. I did open the brood nest up some by putting a blank frame of foundation between the stores and the brood nest on either side. The newest bees should be emerging right about now.
16 days for queens
17 days for drones
20 days for females
Quite a lot of debris on the bottom board, below the screen. I need to get a tray to go under the screen.
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Shook the remaining stragglers from the TBH into the lang.
Refilled the bowls with sugar syrup. Bowls are placed on top of inner cover in empty super.
Friday, May 9, 2008
I have some lemon balm that really is strong. Maybe I will rub that inside the hive and see if I can catch a swarm.
Live and learn!
Thursday, May 8, 2008
Tuesday, May 6, 2008
The first time I had bees I only had one hive. Having two hives this time has given me the chance to notice the very different behavior. The lang hive is still calm and I noticed bright pollen being brought in today.
The TBH is still way more active and aggressive. The mass of bees was still in a ball around the queen cage early today, but later today when the sun was directly on the hive, the bees were flying around in a unorganized manor and the mass of bees had dispersed from the queen cage. Didn't notice any pollen being brought in.
Neither hive seems to be consuming much of the sugar syrup provided.
I had the pleasure of taking a class and receiving two packages from Don AKA the Fat Bee Man on Saturday.
One of the packages is nice and calm and has pretty amber stripes. This package I installed in the lang hive.
The other package is much darker, maybe more Italian, and from install on has been more aggressive and active. This hive was installed in the TBH.