Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Hive Inspection June 11...

I went into the hive today after I discovered a few bees dying outside the hive with deformed wings. I am pretty sure my bees have mites. I decided to try and treat them with peppermint oil. I added 5 drops to one pint of syrup in an entrance feeder. I got pretty worried about not seeing any foragers coming and going, but it has been chilly (below 50 and just started raining) so that is probably the reason they were not out.
Hive inspection...

I did a thurough examination of the frames with the bees on them. The first frame of honey that I was worried about was actually capped honey. I stuck the end of a stick in it and was excited to see the liquid gold!
The bees are chaining or measuring the distance of the frames.

I found my queen as well and she was looking great! She was on the frame with the most bees and brood.
The queen! I found my queen!

I am still pretty worried about the hive, cause I saw about 3 bees with deformed wings. I am going to do some research on the mites and alternative, organic treatments and see what I can do.

Hive mid inspection.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Hive Inspection 6/7/13....

Andrew and I going into our hive.
I wanted to do a hive inspection at 2 weeks from the last time. I am very curious about what is going on in there, but I don't want to bother the bees too much. So we got all of our gear on in 85 degree, full sun weather and inspected the hive around 2pm.

Hive inspection June 7, 2013.

I have been noticing more and more dead bees in the bottom board of the box. I would say it is about 200 or so. The undertakers have a lot of work on their hands and have been flying the dead bees out as much as they can. I believe my hive is smaller than what it was when I got them and they have not started building any new comb. 

Frame full of uncapped honey/nectar with lots of bees.

 We went frame by frame and I took some photos while Andrew lifted each one out. We saw a frame full of uncapped honey or possibly nectar and several frames of brood. Most of the brood is uncapped with little curled up grubs in it. I was not able to find the queen but from the laying pattern, I am confident she is in there.

Some bees and brood but lots of empty cells.

I have some a few concerns about the look of some of the brood and comb. I did notice A LOT of empty cells throughout the hive and no new comb being built on any of the top bars. On the first frame we pulled out there were only a few bees on it and the cells looked a bit strange to me. I am not sure what is going on and I feel like it will be necessary for me to go back into the hive tomorrow, to thoroughly look at this.

These are the cells I am questioning.

I did notice quite a few newly hatched bees, and a ton of grubs. I am hoping this hive just needs time to repopulate and grow stronger.

Bees caring for the grubs.

Some of my observations:
-Did not see the queen
-Lots of empty cells
-Questionable cells
-Many new bees
-No new comb
-No capped honey
-Quite a few dead bees on the bottom board and surrounding the hive
-Lots of grubs

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Even the kids are learning about bees...

I asked grandma to check out some bee books from the library and Maurice and Sebastian loved this book. Maurice is just graduating from Kindergarten this week and reading well. I just love the commentary Sebastian adds to Maurice's reading.

Yay! Learning about bees!!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Watching my bees forage in my yard...

I purposefully have not mowed my lawn in the past couple weeks so my bees can forage the clover and dandelions that grow with the grass. I am happy to see them so interested in it, and there are at least 20 bees in there at all times.