Sunday 15 July 2012

Anniversary hive check

Our second anniversary was marked by checking some of our new hives in the Meadow apiary.

The first task was to sort out the Warre hive where the bees had built comb down through both boxes - cheese wire was used to slice it off above the bottom box.
Assessing the situation

Comb removed from the hive

Preparing to rebuild the hive

Andy collects a swarm!

We then inspected the National hive where we found queen cells - unsure of whether the hive was preparing to swarm or had already done so we left well alone.

Opening the National

Newly-drawn comb with queen cells

More queen cells

Lastly we opened up the Top-Bar hive.  Surprisingly, given how docile the other hives had been, the bees in the Top-Bar were quite bad-tempered.  So with the weather worsening we fed them, closed the hive and retreated.
Top-Bar comb

Mary's just been stung!

It was quite noticeable in all the hives how low the honey stores were - the bad weather has obviously affected the bees severely.  Let's hope things improve from now on - meanwhile, we'll keep feeding them.

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