What did you do in the Apiary today?

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Nannysbees 

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Thank you will do, have contacted our mentor as its a bit scary knowing what to do next if we do need to do a split. First time for us as had the bees June last year.
 

BugsInABox 

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Was tempted to go into them today temps 2-12 but -1 tonight so decided against. Then 4 o’clock loads and loads of then piled out for orientation; I wished I’d opened them up. I was thinking of starting weekly inspections from this weekend.
 

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Erichalfbee 

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Went into mine today. Just as well. Three absolutely rammed with brood and nectar. Supers on just in time I think
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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Although we had a heavy frost last night (third morning on the trot I've had to break the ice on the chicken drinkers) days are beginning to get a little warmer, I wasn't able to go to the bees today (or tomorrow) but spent this evening getting the truck geared up to 'summer ready' mode, a dozen or more shallows permanently loaded, queen excluders and (at the moment) a few poly nucs filled with drawn comb if I need to sort out any colonies that are stores bound. The damson tree in the home apiary is plastered with blossom and was busy with bees today, the other plum trees are also starting to bloom, as is the cherry tree...
 

Goran 

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Yesterday morning.. hills were in white of snow.. snow is gone in the afternoon and clouds cleared.. This morning hills are again in white but cause of frost.. One unfortune never comes alone..
 

pargyle 

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Went into mine today. Just as well. Three absolutely rammed with brood and nectar. Supers on just in time I think
Although we had a heavy frost last night (third morning on the trot I've had to break the ice on the chicken drinkers) days are beginning to get a little warmer, I wasn't able to go to the bees today (or tomorrow) but spent this evening getting the truck geared up to 'summer ready' mode, a dozen or more shallows permanently loaded, queen excluders and (at the moment) a few poly nucs filled with drawn comb if I need to sort out any colonies that are stores bound. The damson tree in the home apiary is plastered with blossom and was busy with bees today, the other plum trees are also starting to bloom, as is the cherry tree...
Was watching mine yesterday .... lots of activity ...looking through the crownboards there are lots of bees and a couple of colonies are building some free comb on the top of the frames ... temperature here tomorrow 12 degrees and rising over the next week to a fairly constant 14 degrees max 6 degrees minimum with mixed cloud and sunshine ...

All the signs are good ... the horse chestnuts are just about ready to blossom, cherry tree absolutely covered in blossom, lilac about a week away, lots of other stuff starting to bloom.

I think it's time to crack the crownboards, see what's going on and be ready for first supers to go one ... Yehhhhh ... here we go again !

A word of caution to our Northern brothers and sisters ... this is the Costa del Fareham ... we haven't seen a frost for about three weeks and cold is anything below 5 degrees !
 

Erichalfbee 

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We left the potting shed roof colony
Was watching mine yesterday .... a couple of colonies are building some free comb on the top of the frames ...



I think it's time to crack the crownboards, see what's going on and be ready for first supers to go one ... Yehhhhh ... here we go again !
We left our potting shed roof colony on 14x12 and a super 😬
It already had lots of drone brood in the bottom box but masses between boxes. How anybody copes with brood and a half I don’t know!
Interestingly all the drone brood I destroyed cleaning up and putting an excluder in place hadn’t a single varroa.
 

pargyle 

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We left the potting shed roof colony
We left our potting shed roof colony on 14x12 and a super 😬
It already had lots of drone brood in the bottom box but masses between boxes. How anybody copes with brood and a half I don’t know!
Interestingly all the drone brood I destroyed cleaning up and putting an excluder in place hadn’t a single varroa.
Perhaps Varroa suffer from Vertigo ... or the potting shed is on a significant confluence of energy lines ... are you putting another bait box up there this year ?
 

drex 

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Yesterday I inspected the colony my friends asked me to place in tHeir animal sanctuary. It was a bit chilly, but I had no option as will not be able to inspect for a few weeks.
Really good and strong. Double brood, 8 frames of brood in top and 4 in bottom. Did not see the queen but was not looking. Added qx and a super
 

Erichalfbee 

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Perhaps Varroa suffer from Vertigo ... or the potting shed is on a significant confluence of energy lines ... are you putting another bait box up there this year ?
Already up.
The problem I had last year is that the swarm arrived in the morning and had foraged substantially by the evening. I didn’t want to lose all those bees so we left them there, the idea being that we would move them out to a friends first but that never happened and before we knew it there were two supers on top.
I have a plan this year, a better one 😂
 

madasafish 

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Took advantage of this am's susnshine (balmy 9C) - early frost gone - and no wind so inspected all my nucs and mini nucs.
Poorly nuc doing well now on three frames Bias - only half filled but better than prior one and a half.
Three nucs on 5 frames BIAS Will have to be hived.
One nuc with DLQ - I saw drones emerging two days ago which was a warning sign.

All three mini nucs thriving - two will have to be rehoused in full nucs. ( Cable tied in and dummied down)
Deciding whether to requeen the DLQ hive with third mini nuc, or giving it up. Will probably move into a nuc and requeen.

Not looked at full hives yet.
 

Murox 

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Weather very kind today - 12 -14 degrees with a moderate SSE wind. Had a good look into the hives. The Glencraigs site has more accessible forage so those bees are looking strong. Headed by last years queen from J Getty - no sign at all of chalkiness. Gone through a lot of stores in the last month; plenty of larvae and eggs with pollen getting packed in, left the pollen patty on though. Busy building out some new frames today as well. The A'chruach site is cooler and it shows, bees not so advanced at all; one hive had loads of stores so their fondant was removed .
 

pargyle 

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Already up.
The problem I had last year is that the swarm arrived in the morning and had foraged substantially by the evening. I didn’t want to lose all those bees so we left them there, the idea being that we would move them out to a friends first but that never happened and before we knew it there were two supers on top.
I have a plan this year, a better one 😂
The potting shed is DEFINITELY on the confluence of energy lines... I don't need my dowsing rods I can feel it from here !
 

masterBK 

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Sunny day and back garden reached 16 C in early afternoon so opened up one of the garden hives to remove 2019 queen with paralysed left rear leg (seems to be affecting her laying pattern) and replace her by paper uniting 6 comb nuk with much younger queen (mated july last yr) that is laying really well. Should hopefully also solve a chalk brood problem as chalk brood in the main colony but none in nuk. Also bees in the hive are aggressive compared with gentle bees in nuk. Lets hope they stay gentle as colony grows. Now down to 29 colonies (don't really want more than 25 so will be looking to unite more colonies over next few weeks but need to do proper assessment to decide which queens to keep and which to cull). I don't tolerate passengers or colonies that have undesirable straits.
 

elainemary 

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During a sunny spell today I checked the entrances of all hives for drones (I have yet to inspect inside hives at all, and am paranoid about swarms).

Just one hive (a 6-over-6 frame double nuc) had drones, and it had quite a lot of them. This scared me into doing a first inspection on that colony.

I took the opportunity to move them into a full sized hive.

No swarm cells, thankfully. Quite a bit of brood. About 10 frames of bees (bees not brood). Not that much honey, so feeding them now.

Slightly more relaxed on the other colonies now that there were no swarm cells (or even cups) in the one colony that was producing drones. This may be foolish. Am I right in thinking that hives that intend to swarm generally produce their own drones first?
Did the same yesterday, had been thinking about my strongest colony down in the valley esp as I had seen drone brood when I had a v quick look in March, not looked since.

Did another inspection, loads of drone brood around the edges of frames and emerged drones. 2 play cups only. Starting to bring in nectar and as they were full of bees with 6 frames sealed brood in the brood box about to emerge, I put on another super

Re swarming. The other 2 hives in this apiary had no drones. Know it’s limited numbers to compare , but still think it’s too early in west Yorks, esp as drones need 12-15 days to sexually mature after emergence and they fly to different DCAs to the queen to mate to prevent inbreeding. They must be able to judge whether other drones are about, maybe that’s why they allow drifting of drones.

Clipped all 3 queens. Was sunny and felt v warm in the sheltered garden. Set up a bait hive on the top terrace, on the site of a hive I moved to another new apiary 1.5 miles away. It’s an easier site to visit. Was pleased to see no bees had returned - had left a Nuc box with some empty combs just in case.
 

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Nannysbees 

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Bees very busy bringing in loads of pollen,especially our problem hive.going to leave them for three days,inspect and make a decision.Taken advise from our mentor.Bees decided to poo on my clean t-shirt hanging on the line and if that wasn't enough, landed on hubby's head and left a deposit. Couldn't believe the amount that came out of one bee,pretty pattern,work of art!!!!!
 

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StephenT 

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It not just my bees “fledging”. Saw baby Blackbirds, Robins and Bluetits in the garden over the last couple of days. It’s spring with a vengeance.
 

The Poot 

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It not just my bees “fledging”. Saw baby Blackbirds, Robins and Bluetits in the garden over the last couple of days. It’s spring with a vengeance.
All the bricks and mortar reflecting warmth means you are ahead of the game in the smoke. The birds are nesting and the boxes are occupied in my garden, but the insects and food sources for young birds are in short supply at present.
 

Robert Denny 

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Nice and
Painted /stained all boxes Black inc a paynes nuc now converted to 8 frames 14 x12 and an abilo poly hive.
checked inside the abelo it was broodless a few weeks ago . they were all flying so i had a quick look .I opted to treat with OAas bees had polished up all the old comb. Pleased to report there are now 3 14x12 mainly caped brood in a nice pattern. Really pleased to note how calm and friendly my bees are. As it was only when I swapped out the last of the old standard brood frames for a 14x12 and i Shook the bees off I realised I hadn't put my veil on . I also removed the super that had some honey in for winter stores as they haven't touched it and have plenty in the the brood box , I thought that still being only a few seams they may be struggling to keep the hive warm even though its poly.
Today I started making up some bait hives from 40l storage boxes from Argos they take a national frame nicely and will just take a 14x12 £10.
Hi Mark,
The 40L storage boxes, are they the “clear” ones?
Have you had any success yet or in previous years with them.
Thanks,
Rob.
 

Swarm 

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All the bricks and mortar reflecting warmth means you are ahead of the game in the smoke. The birds are nesting and the boxes are occupied in my garden, but the insects and food sources for young birds are in short supply at present.
Are they hiding from you? I've had Blackbird chicks dotted around the garden for weeks.
 

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