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kazmcc 

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I spoke with my mentor today, as I forgot to fill in the hive notes and want to keep on top of that. The bees started as five frames, within 9 days, thay had filled out half a frame each side of the central five, and were drawing comb on the other sides. They are on brood and a half, with no QE and were also drawing out comb in the super on 2 frames. He told me what he'd noted, they were very populous, lots of bees, laying is good, very few drones, a few drone brood. Reasonable honey on the frames around brood - brood very full to the walls of the frames. This is due to there being a solid floor in so far, the mesh will be fitted next inspection. Good honey in the made up supers. Good pollen stores.

They haven't been fed yet. When I asked if we are going to feed them, he said they are doing well enough on their own. I forwarded him the warning from the bee inspector in Cumbria, and he reassured me that our bees live in the bee restaurant of the allotments with two huge parks nearby. They can take care of themselves for the next week or so, but we will check again next inspection and make a decision. I must say, they are very calm, at most there were 10 -12 bees in the air at the height of our inspection and the were very quiet. They all returned to the box immediately after we put the lid on and they just do their coming and going thing without even noticing us really. Great bees for kids, hope they continue to be this nice.

I keep going on about it, but it was the first time I actually looked at the frames, and my 11 yr old son was there for his first time bee keeping. We saw a bee emerging from a cell, chewing her way out of the capping. Paul said the others would normally pull her out but we had cleared the frame a bit by patting the bees and they just got out of the way...it was magical, especially as it was our first real inspection, almost like they put on a show for us :)
 

Lois 

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It sounds like you are doing really well, well your ladies are. I am getting more and more obsessed with my girls, I am hooked but still a little wary, I still get nervous just before I inspect but only 2 inspections have been noisy and that was before they swarmed, since then they have been really calm and nice.
 

Poly Hive 

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With no disrespect to your mentor he is only partly right.

If a colony of bees is surrounded by the very best in flora for bees they CAN and sometime DO starve.

Why?

PH
 

Firegazer 

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I guess if the numbers of developing brood (lots of food used) and foragers (food brought back) gets too out of balance?

This probably doesn't happen once the colony has had some time to get itself sorted, but starting from a nuc, there isn't that balance established for a while.

On the right track?

FG
 

Erichalfbee 

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Could it be that flowers need sustained warm weather, sunshine and also rain to produce nectar? So flow depends on the weather? Millions of flowers, rotten weather, no food?
 

PaleoPerson 

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The bees are drawing out foundation and putting in stores. The point about extra feeding has been discussed.

I think I would trust the view of the 'man on the ground' in this case.
 

kazmcc 

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Owwwww, I was just starting to relax about them lol, They are calm and busy. I check on them every couple of days ( from a safe distance, just to watch ) so if there becomes an imbalance, presumably they would get a bit noisier and erratic at the hive opening. Is this correct?
 

Erichalfbee 

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You need to get At The Hive entrance by Storch. It's a fascinating handbook describing bee activity at the entrance season by season. Northern Beebooks have it.
 

Brosville 

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Or it is available for free as a "torrent download":coolgleamA:
 
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Erichalfbee 

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Wow I didn't know about Torrent (my age I suspect) Just had a look. I may be busy for some time.
Thanks Brosville
 

Peter Cox 

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Wow I didn't know about Torrent (my age I suspect) Just had a look. I may be busy for some time.
Thanks Brosville
Be aware that use of Bitorrent is probably a contravention of your TOS and may also create some slowdown issues on your network. You need to make sure that the application is shut down fully else it will run in background as a service answering peer requests for data.
It's a peer to peer service and anything that you can download, if left in situ, becomes available for upload sharing. This can create a lot of sending activity on your internet connection and if your usage is metered can create some expense.
 
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milkermel 

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Know what you meen about enjoying just watching the girls. I collected a swarm a couple of weeks back, not massive but a good A3 box size. Well they are installed in a makeshift hive at mo that had rather a large entrance, I had seen several wasps gaining entry so decided to put a stop to it, closed the entrance down with some bits of wood, then sat back and watched my girls to see what would happen. Was amazed I knew that there were guard bees, but due to the size of my other hives there hasnt been much bother from wasps. Every time a wasp came within 3cm of hive door as quick as Mr Bens magical shop keeper out shot 5 to 8 of my girls and told mr vespa where to go! really was great to watch.

My first nuc last year was great to start with and I thought I had the bee keeping lark sussed!!!:rofl: come this year when the box got full and I missed a QC etc etc realised that I had a lot to get used to! when i get it right my girls are great, some days though I am totally hopless!

Glad you are enjoying yourself though
 

kazmcc 

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Thanks Milkermel, I could watch them all day. I'm just unlucky that it's the school holidays and the kids won't show patience. If I go to check them, the kids moan and say " You're just going to stare at them aren't you " lol

Thanks Brosville, I've already downloaded that, but it's hard to read from a laptop, I like to take a book to bed to do my reading, so thanks to erichalfbee for reminding me about it, as I have a free postage offer from Amazon, so I'm going to see if they have it.

Grand Wazoo, visited the link and loved the picture on the front of the book ;) of a bloke sat staring at a bee hive lol, just what my kids are worried I'll spend all day doing. Fascinating stuff though isn't it? I've only got through the first few tens of pages, but it seems that a change of behaviour means a change of circumstances inside so as long as they carry on doing what they are doing, I shalln't worry and just wait until next inspection. If I notice any difference though, I'll get the ol' mentor down or email him until he can take no more ;)
 

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