Jun 30 2015

hoo boy is it hot

this is a giant bush of something or other that is just behind the beehives. there is a lot of pollen on this (shake it and you end up with a pile of yellow). This is one of two of these plants, and they are both about 6-7 feet tall, about 6-7 feet wide and covered in these flowers.

this is a giant bush of something or other that is just behind the beehives. there is a lot of pollen on this (shake it and you end up with a pile of yellow). This is one of two of these plants, and they are both about 6-7 feet tall, about 6-7 feet wide and covered in these flowers.

So it was 107 two days ago and the last two days hovering around 99 at our house. There is no end in sight for the next 15 days, with it getting back up into the 100’s by the weekend.

The Italian girls are bearding all the time now, especially in late afternoon and into the evening. I’m assuming they have a lot more bees in the hive.

I was going to wait to go out and check if I needed to pull honey and give them more room until it cools down, but that’s not going to happen.

So this morning at 7:15am it was only 79 degrees and I went out to check on the girls. I took out:

  • 3 giant rubbermaid totes with lids, each will hold one western box
  • my last 2 western boxes and 6 empty frames
  • a receptacle for wax
  • got out the soft bee brush

Previously, the orange and blue hive each had 4 boxes, then a queen excluder and then 3 boxes with honey (some with brood); and the yellow hive had just 4 boxes, the top two with some honey and some bare frames.

I started with orange and then moved to blue. On each hive, I smoked a little, then started at the top (I had to move the top box down because the hive is so tall, the top box is at my eye level). I culled through the top 3 honey boxes and sure enough, the queen excluder kept the queen from coming up and laying and made the girls concentrate on making honey.

Whenever I found a great frame of honey that was capped off, I pulled it, smoked it, gently brushed all the bees off the frame, then went and put it in the box in the tote with no bees left dangling and put the lid on the box.

After I got to the queen excluder, I started moving any brood I found down.

All three hives on their bee deck. The weeds are starting to take over in front of the hive but it's just too hot to go out there in a bee suit and pull them up right now.

All three hives on their bee deck. The weeds are starting to take over in front of the hive but it’s just too hot to go out there in a bee suit and pull them up right now.

I saw both Queen Håper in the orange hive (her “spot” has worn off so she’s now just a dark brown Carniolan queen) and Queen Siste Sjanse in the blue hive (golden Italian) and found fresh eggs and brood in both hives.

There was a TON OF HONEY on both hives. There was at least 1 1/2 boxes of brand new nectar, not even started capping yet. And also tons of honey about 3/4 capped or honey in which the middle of the frame previously had brood so now they are cleaned out and filling it with nectar. There was also more than 4 solid frames of pollen in each hive.

I looked briefly at the yellow hive. They are bringing in a lot of nectar and still had just two boxes of honey on top with about 3 empty frames. I didn’t delve down into the bottom boxes to look for the queen or babies since they are still working and there are a very good amount of bees in the hive. This hive seems to be having trouble building wax in an organized fashion. There are rows of wax they’ve built perpendicular to the rows on the frames, in fat bars. There was an entire frame in which they had basically hung a wild curtain of wax from the top bar of the frame, paralleling the actual frame and filled it with nectar. So when I tried to lift it out, it started tearing away from the frame in a sheet. I put it carefully back in with a frame pushed up against it to hold it in.

I de-beed (by smoking a lot and thumping) a full box of honey from one of the other hives and moved it to the top of this hive to give them more food, and room to expand brooding up in the bottom boxes.

All in all, I pulled 17 very fat, heavy frames of capped honey from the two hives and put them in storage.  This and moving a box to the yellow hive had me end up with the following configuration on the hives.

  • Both orange and blue hives have 4 brood boxes, a queen excluder and then 3 boxes left of honey not capped off yet
  • Yellow box has 5 boxes, brood so far in the bottom two, no queen excluder, and 1 full box of honey and two boxes of mixed nectar and wild comb

I got done about 8:50am and was absolutely drenched in sweat, with sweat pooling all over the insides of my glasses. I had to go in and take a completely cold shower.

 

The blue hive bearding last night about 8pm

The blue hive bearding last night about 8pm

CHECKLIST    In two weeks, I’ll be ready to pull more honey. At that time, I’ll look at the next 15 day forcast. If it’s still in the 100’s for two more weeks and we’re in a drought, I’ll need to look to see if they are still bringing in new nectar. If they’re NOT, it will mean the nectar flow has stopped and I’ll leave most of the honey on the hives. If they ARE still bringing in new nectar, I’ll probably be able to pull another 16-30 frames of honey and still leave them with 16-20 frames of honey each, with a whole 8 weeks of summer still to go.

Then I’ll actually extract all the honey in storage and on the hives at that time and put the wet frames back on the hives.

Then later in the season (middle of August) I’ll look one more time to see if there is more honey to pull for the honey bank, how much to leave on the hive and if there is still more to extract.

 

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Jun 20 2015

2 days, 2 peeks and more

On Thursday, it was going to be 89 degrees, so I did an inspection at 9am. My BB (baby brudder) came over to participate.  He and I have invested in the Flow Hive project and he’s going to start beekeeping next spring, so he came over to get into the hive. It was warm and overcast but the girls were out and about.

Bees "bearding" on the front of the blue hive. They do this because it's hot, this gets some of the bee bodies outside of the hive to cool off, and they fan air from outside so it will circulate into the hive through the front door. When it's very hot, they can form a "beard" over the whole bottom of the hive and down the front stoop.

Bees “bearding” on the front of the blue hive. They do this because it’s hot, this gets some of the bee bodies outside of the hive to cool off, and they fan air from outside so it will circulate into the hive through the front door. When it’s very hot, they can form a “beard” over the whole bottom of the hive and down the front stoop.

I didn’t do a full inspection, but looked at all three hives to see whether they needed more room. The Italian hive has been “bearding” on the hive, probably because they have so many bees in the hive.

I was looking for the following:

  • Was there honey to pull?
  • How much honey are they making?
  • Does the queen need more room to lay (does she need some empty frames)?
  • Are they too crowded (do they need another box and more frames)?
  • Are the queens laying?
  • How is the new hive doing (last time they only had 2 boxes of bees and 2 boxes full of empty frames)?

We revved up the smoker, and got into the hives

The orange hive had 2 top boxes that were just heavy heavy with honey. We actually pulled to beautiful capped very full frames of honey and put them in the storage bin, after brushing the bees of, which makes them kind of grumpy.  Both boxes had 8 very full and heavy frames of honey, just not quite capped off yet.  AND right in the middle of the honey frames – capped brood.

The rest of the boxes were full of honey, full of bees, full of babies, including fresh eggs. There were 3 bare frames and I put 2 more bare frames in to substitute, but they are going to need more room.

The blue hive was just crowded. Again, the top 3 boxes were just packed full of not-quite-capped honey, but many of them also had capped brood right in the middle of the honey frame. They had no bare frames at all, so they need room.

So it took me a few years before I could actually spot the queen in a hive on purpose. I’m pretty good now. I’m just saying to BB “gee, I sure wish you could see a queen” because, like I used to, every time he saw a big fat lumbering drone, he would point and say “is that the queen?”.  And WHAM, BB just points his finger and says “is that the queen?”.  And there she is, scuttling around the frame.  I couldn’t believe it – he spotted her right off. So, he’ll be a good beekeeper, yards ahead of me.

The yellow hive still just has four boxes, but instead of the top two boxes being bare frames, they are filling them with nectar and just starting to cap off, so I left them alone.

One of the big lavender plants in the garden that the bees love

One of the big lavender plants in the garden that the bees love

So today, Saturday, HB, Juju and I went up to the bee house to get a bunch more western frame parts, since I have lots of western boxes but I had only 3 more frames and I need to get some room in those hives. I talked to the Wiz and told him what I was seeing. He said I might just have to do some honey extracting in the next week, then let them build it up again. Otherwise, I could end up with hives 10 feet tall.

I told him the queen was laying up in the honey boxes. He said to put a box with bare frames under the honey boxes, then put on my queen excluder (make sure the queen’s down) and then just let the babies hatch out of the upper boxes of honey and then I can extract since she supposedly can’t get up there to keep laying.

Good idea.  So I got enough to make 20 new frames, and HB and I put them together when I got home. Then about 10:30am I went out to the bee deck.  I took:

  • 2 queen exluders
  • 2 boxes each with 8 bare frames
  • some extra frames
  • the honey storage bin (just in case – wishful thinking)

In both the orange and blue hive I removed the top 3 boxes, which were very heavy with honey and had some capped brood. Before I removed each box, I smoked them kind of heavy to drive the bees and any queen down into the hive (the frames were dead full of honey and capped brood so there were no empty cells for her to lay in – which theoretically means she shouldn’t have been in those boxes to start — theoretically). Then I’d remove the box, smoke the next one to drive them down, and on to the third box. When you smoke them that way, they put up quit a racket – the buzzing kind of ramps up a pitch or two and gets loud.

So now I had bees and hopefully the queen down in the bottom 4 boxes. I then put on a new box with 8 bare frames (so 5 boxes for brood); and then the queen excluder; and then the 3 boxes of honey. Getting that last really heavy box of honey up that high was a chore. It was literally at my chin height and I had to rest the heavy box of honey and bees against my collar bone and shove it up on top of the hive (boy I hope they don’t tip over!).

I got a picture of both a big tiger swallowtail butterfly and one of my girls gathering nectar side by side from the lavender

I got a picture of both a big tiger swallowtail butterfly and one of my girls gathering nectar side by side from the lavender

I should have 3 boxes of honey in the top – when the babies hatch out, they should just go about their business, clean out their cells, and the bees can either fill them with nectar, or cap off the rest of the honey and I can just pull them and extract them, maybe next week when I get home from California (working again this week).

The queen should stay out of the upper honey boxes both because she has a whole other box to lay in and doesn’t like to walk across bare frames to get up to the honey (not so sure about this one) AND because there is a queen excluder.

Here are a couple of videos I took today. One is a SloMo video of a bee working the lavender. If you look close, you can see her “tongue”/proboscis sticking out as she flies to get to the nectar.  The other video is a huge tiger swallowtail butterfly also gathering nectar from the lavender. It flutters it’s wings really fast while it does this instead of just sitting still.

OK girls, make lots of honey while I’m gone and maybe we’ll have an extracting party next week.

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Jun 13 2015

girls in the garden

Girl working the lavender. If you look close, you can see her long reddish "tongue" (proboscis) in the flower getting the nectar

Girl working the lavender. Look at her beautiful wing structure. Not a single tear yet – it’s early in the season.

Plump little strawberries

Plump little strawberries

Today was sunny, warm (about a high of 80) with blue sky. The girls were out like crazy. All three hives were loud and busy. They were just zooming out of the hives, up into the sky over the bee fence and back in again.

Here's a girl by a rose petal in the bird bath. If you look carefully, you can see her reddish "tongue" (proboscis) poking under the petal to suck up the water

Here’s a girl by a rose petal in the bird bath. If you look carefully, you can see her reddish “tongue” (proboscis) poking under the petal to suck up the water

With three hives now, the volume of bees up high in the air has really multiplied and it looks like someone has sprinkled sparkles in about 10-12 feet up as they flash about in the sunshine.

They were coming and going with pollen. There were about 5 very fat drones waddling about and struggling on the bee deck, obviously kicked out of the hive. Probably eating more than the girls think they’re worth at this point since they have 3 healthy queens.

I took the time to take some pictures of both the girls and what they’ve created for us in the garden. I harvested blueberries, strawberries and peas which we wouldn’t have had if the girls hadn’t pollinated the flowers.

 

Blueberries starting to ripen

Blueberries starting to ripen

Thanks, girls. We appreciate the bounty you’re giving us.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

peas harvested

peas harvested

 

peas ready to eat

peas ready to eat

 

 

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Jun 08 2015

June 6 inspection & today

On Saturday, I went out to inspect the hives at 10am, which ended up about an hour too late. It was bloody hot, in the mid 80’s and that’s just to hot to be in a canvas bee suit for a couple of hours.

I inspected all three hives completely because I wanted to know if they were getting crowded or thinking of swarming.

I took out two empty sorting boxes, two extra boxes with 8 empty frames in each, and – just in case (wishful thinking) – a big tub to collect honey frames if there were any to collect.

Orange Hive Inspection

I started with  5 western boxes on the hive. gently smoked the front door and under the lid and then opened her up.

There were plenty of bees in the hive.

frame with black pollen

frame with black pollen – the dark spaces are not empty, they’re filled with black pollen

5 frames of open brood in all stages and very fresh eggs; 11 frames of closed brood; 1 frame of honey (woohoo – but I didn’t pull it); 9 frames heavy with nectar; and 3 frames of good pollen. One frame had a lot of black pollen – not sure where they’re getting that from, perhaps poppies from somewhere.

I did not see Queen Håper but she’s laying fresh eggs.

I sorted all the open brood in one box, and all the closed brood in a couple of boxes. Then I moved the open brood to the bottom with pollen on one side and nectar on the other, the closed brood in the two boxes above with food and the top two boxes were full of nectar with only two empty frames.

So this hive needs some room for expansion. I put a new, empty box with 8 bare frames above the brood boxes and below the nectar boxes, so the bees will have to make wax and the queen can lay below the nectar and honey.

So this hive now has 6 boxes.

Blue Hive Inspection

I started with  5 western boxes on the hive. gently smoked the front door and under the lid and then opened her up.

There were plenty of bees in the hive.

There were 7 frames of open brood in all stages and very fresh eggs; 11 frames of closed brood; 13 frames of heavy nectar; and 6 frames of pollenI spied Queen Siste Sjanse with her entourage and took a little video of this. Video of Queen Siste Sjanse and her attendants.

Queen Siste Sjanse laying an egg in a cell.

Queen Siste Sjanse laying an egg in a cell.

Then this is the really exciting part – I was taking the video and actually watched the queen put her butt in a cell and lay an egg and then pull out of the cell! I’ve never seen that happen before live. Here is a picture of her actually laying (it looks like she has a stubby body because her whole back end is down in the cell and her body is curled inward). And then here is the video of her actually laying. It’s pretty short, just 3 seconds, so you have to watch quick. It’s a little shaky because I was so excited. She is just right of the center of the screen and right at the beginning you can watch her tuck her butt down into a cell.

A-maaazing!

I also sorted and managed this hive to put open brood on the bottom, then closed brood, and this hive  had literally not a single empty frame so I also placed an empty box with 8 bare frames above the brood and below the two boxes of nectar for expansion.

This hive now has 6 boxes.

Yellow Hive Inspection

I started with  4 western boxes on the hive. gently smoked the front door and under the lid and then opened her up.

There were plenty of bees in the hive.

There were 4 frames of open brood in all stages and very fresh eggs; 6 frames of closed brood; no honey; there was nectar on the corners of all the brood frames but no full frames of nectar; 3 frames of pollen. And the top two boxes were still completely bare and not drawn out.

Checklist

  • I’ll check on these girls again in a few days and if there is still not much nectar, I may steal some frames from another hive and give them to to this hive.

So this hive is still not booming, but they’re doing fine. They are just new and also Carniolan so they start slower than Italians.

I spied Queen Freyja scuttling about in the bottom, so I let her be. I didn’t add any more boxes.

 

That was all on Saturday.

Today, it was 96 degrees. This evening I was out weeding on the other side of the fence from the hive – little girls flying all around me on their way home.  The blue hive was “bearding” on the front to keep cool, so I flooded the pavers in front of the hives with some water so it would evaporate and cool them off.

Then I felt an intense pain on the top of my foot and realized I’d been stung on the front bone and quickly brushed my hand on my foot and found a mangled VSD dragging itself across my foot! It REALLY REALLY HURT. I brushed the VSD on the ground and took great pleasure using my trowel to cut it in half and then crush each half of its body – it REALLY REALLY HURT. I had to stop everything and go inside, wash my foot with cold water, put ice on it (no stinger because it’s a VSD), and put Benadryl cream on my foot because it REALLY REALLY HURTS.

End of evening in the garden.

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May 23 2015

the girls enjoy the garden

girl working the blooming sage

girl working the blooming sage

Here are some pictures of the girls enjoying the garden today. It was 84 degrees, sunny and calm. And a video of the girls working the blooming sage bush.

Can you believe the amount of blueberries the girls made?

Can you believe the amount of blueberries the girls made?

new strawberries; a product of the girls hard work. If they hadn't pollinated the flowers - no strawberries

new strawberries; a product of the girls hard work. If they hadn’t pollinated the flowers – no strawberries

rose bud - in a few days the girls can enjoy this

rose bud – in a few days the girls can enjoy this

Italian girl working the chives

Italian girl working the chives

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May 17 2015

inspection interruptus

So I started to inspect the bees yesterday afternoon, about 3pm. It was sunny, blue sky, about 72 degrees. I moved out 2 empty boxes for sorting frames; three western boxes with 8 frames in case the bees needed more room; got suited up, got all my equipment out and smoked the blue hive for starters.

Blue Hive

The blue hive had and ended with 5 boxes.

There were 8 frames of capped brood, very nicely filled, 7 frames of uncapped brood with tiny larvae and fresh eggs, 3 frames of pollen, lots of bees and I saw Queen Siste Sjanse. Here’s a video of the golden italian queen they rolled on their own.

However, there was 1 frame of nectar and 2 boxes on top of empty frames, all eaten out. Hmmmm. That means they’re not bringing in nectar. So are we in a nectar dearth or are they just not pulling it in?  I don’t want to start feeding them. I read that if there is no nectar and you don’t feed them, the queen will regulate herself and just stop laying up until there’s food enough to support the hive.

I managed the open brood and queen down to the bottom, then the capped brood on top of that.

If I feed them, I’ll boost them and get the hive going for faster honey production. But I could end up feeding them for weeks and I want them to do this on their own.

So I’m thinking about this and………..whoooow. A sharp wind just zooms across the yard, the sky gets black in about 30 seconds, trees start snapping and all of a sudden – flash and CRACK!!! Lightning and thunder. Well, this isn’t good at all. I’m standing out in a space surrounded by metal wire fencing in between beehives with metal roofs.  Then is starts to patter rain.

So quick like a bunny, pop the whole hive back in place, put the lid on and by the time I’m grabbing boxes and equipment, it’s starting to pour rain out.

End of inspection – and cut.

OK, that was Saturday (yesterday).  So today, once again it’s sunny and bright out about 2pm so I decide I might was well get it going with the other two hives.

Again with all the boxes and frames and equipment and suiting up and smoker.

Orange Hive

The orange hive started out and ended with 5 boxes.

There were 8 frames of capped brood, 4 frames of uncapped brood with tiny larvae and fresh eggs. There were 15 frames of nectar, 2 frames of pollen and lots of bees. I did not see the queen, but I saw fresh eggs.

Sooooo, I took 5 frames of nectar, brushed off the not-so-happy bees, and plunked them in the top box of the blue hive, swapping for empty frames.  Now the blue hive has 5 frames of nectar and the orange hive still has 10 frames of nectar.

I managed the open brood down to the bottom with the capped brood on top of that.

Yellow Hive

This is the new hive and it started out and ended with 4 boxes.

There were 3 frames of capped brood, 4 frames of uncapped brood, 3 frames of nectar, 2 frames of pollen, a good healthy amount of bees and I saw Queen Freyja. Here’s a video of her doddling around.

Again, I managed the open and capped brood to the bottom two boxes, put an empty between the 2nd and top box that has the nectar so they have room to expand.

 

The bees were all friendly (except when I was brushing them off their honey and stealing it – just a little “buzzy”), hard working, gentle and busy working away. They were flying about all over the garden and zipping in and out of the  hives.

honeybee on chive

honeybee on chive

So here are some interesting pictures. It’s hard to describe to you the absolute gargantuousness of this mother-of-all-bumblebees I saw on my chives. I kid you not, I very briefly put my thumb near the thing and it was as big as 2/3 of my thumb. I first thought it was a hummingbird and you could hear it BUZZZZING from yards away.

So I’ve got a picture of one of my delicate little girls on a chive.  Then a picture of this Jabba The Bumblebee tub of lard on the same chive. Then here is a video of it galumphing around on the chives.

Lardo bumble on chive

Lardo bumble on chive

 

 

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May 11 2015

adding room to the new girls

Today was sunny, in the low 70’s and the bees were out and about in force.  There are all sorts of things blooming around here – chestnut trees, dogwoods, flowering cherries, irises, euphorbia, lilacs, tons of flowers in the neighbors gardens.

The new yellow hive had a lot of bees around the front door, so I decided to give them a 4th box to give them room. Since the new box would have completely bare frames (not drawn out) I decided to give them just one gallon of syrup to help stimulate them to make wax.

So I just put on a bee jacket/veil, gloves, no smoker (such a brave girl) and went out and popped the top. There were bees all over in the 3rd box, so I added the top box, with just 6 frames to make room for the feeder, and 1 gallon of 1:1 syrup.

I saw bees in the garden all over the chives and in the front yard all in the euphorbia and on the purple thistles.

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Apr 30 2015

quick check of the girls

It got to about 64 today and was sunny, but just a little breezy. However, I decided to go inspect the girls about 2pm because I want to make sure they aren’t getting too crowded or wanting to swarm.

I took out a sorting box, and 2 boxes with frames just in case I needed to expand any of the hives. I got suited up, started the smoker and decided to start with the blue hive. I was just going to quickly find out what kind of food, brood and space they had and make sure the queens weren’t moving up.

Blue Hive

There are 5 boxes on this hive. I saw Queen Håper and she had moved up to the 3rd box and was scuttling about on a frame with all capped brood.

There were 9 frames of mostly capped brood, a couple of them were fresh brood. There were at least 10 frames of honey/nectar and 1 frame of pollen.

I managed the hive down so that in the bottom box was the queen, brood and food.

The next box up was all brood with food on the edges.
Then another box with brood and food.

4th box is all empties/drawn out and the 5th box is very heavy with 8 frames of food.

Orange Hive

There are 5 boxes on this hive. I didn’t see the queen, but I did see brand new eggs, in the 3rd box. There were 11 frames of brood, mostly capped, at least 8 frames of food and one of pollen.

I managed the hive down so that the bottom 3 boxes were brood and food (fresh brood on the bottom), then an empty/drawn out box and then a box full of food on the top.

Yellow Hive

There are 3 boxes on this hive. I saw Queen Freyja up in the 2nd box. There were 8 frames of capped brood with a couple of those frames containing new brood. They had about 3 frames of food, not as much as the other two but there’s food out there so I’m not going to feed them.

I pulled out the empty feeder and substituted 2 frames. Then I managed the hive down. I put the queen and brood in the bottom box and half of the next box up, with some empties for expansion. The top box has food and empties.

It’s supposed to be a sunny weekend. I will try my hardest not to bother you girls for the next 2 weeks so gather up food and fly, fly, fly.

 

 

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Apr 18 2015

Mite treatment removed

beeswax lotion bar

beeswax lotion bar

Yesterday about 2pm when it was nice and warm and sunny, I went out, suited up with my smoker, to remove the mite strips from the Blue and Orange hives.

lotion bar in a little red clay ramekin

lotion bar in a little red clay ramekin

I quickly smoked the front door, then removed the top 3 boxes, removed the two mite strips from the top of the 2nd brood box and put all three boxes back in place.

So each hive now has 2 brood boxes, 2 with food and an expansion box on top.

Some of the things I like to do with the stuff the girls give me is pictured here. I make little body lotion bars with beeswax (from last year), organic cocoa butter, organic olive oil, Vitamin E oil and honey. Then package them up in these cute little ramekins, wrap them and tie them up with a bow.

all packaged up and ready to give

all packaged up and ready to give

I use them for quick but thoughtful and homemade gifts.

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Apr 16 2015

Please meet her royal highness

So at about 1pm it was 62 degrees, sunny and mild outside and I decided to go check on the new hive to make sure the queen got out and about.

I put on my bee suit, got an extra box with drawn out frames just in case I felt like they needed room, headed out and got my smoker going just a little.

I gave just a little puff at the front door and under the hood, removed the top and the inner cover. The 1 gallon trough feeder was completely dry and empty, which either means the bees are smart enough not to drown in the syrup or they cleaned out all the dead bodies of those that did. There are only about a dozen dead bodies in front of the hive, so I’m going to go for smart.

There are only 2 Westerns, the bottom had the queen cage and the top has 6 frames and the feeder.

I pulled a couple frames from the top box  and saw syrup in the cells and actually a good amount of pollen, and on the 3rd frame in, so in about the middle – I saw a whole bunch of very fresh eggs! So I looked around a little and – there she was, the Queen! Scuttling about, looking a little svelt and very black with a big blue dot on her back.

I looked in the bottom box and there were no eggs there, so after she got out of her cage, she immediately moved up.

I went ahead then and managed her box down to the bottom, put the bottom box on top, then added a 3rd box with 6 frames and moved the feeder to the top.  Since she’s laying up and they are also filling up the frames with nectar and pollen, I want to give her room to expand.

The other two hives are bringing in new nectar from somewhere and making honey, so there has to be nectar out there. But I’m going to go ahead and feed the new hive one more time. The other two hives have a lot of bees to both take care of the new babies and to forage, but the new hive is pretty small, so I’ll give them a little boost.

I went ahead and put in a gallon of 1:1 syrup. Since I’ll be gone for about 9 days, I want them to have plenty of food and plenty of room.

I have a queen, she’s laying and looks beautiful. Her name is Queen Freyja, the norse goddess of fertility, and she now rules over the Yellow Hive.  Video of Queen Freyja.

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