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Moobee 

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Moved the swarm into a full size hive. Cleared a few supers of dandelion honey. Bramble not far off
Bramble starting to flower here along with cabbage palm. The most delicious scent of vanilla wafting down the road.
 

Moobee 

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Decided to extract a couple of supers as i'll be a champion bodybuilder if I had to keep lifting those off for each inspection! Very light straw coloured honey and a nice taste, i'm guessing mostly OSR? Water at 17.5% according to the refractometer.
40lbs in total and customers already clamouring for honey.
D609FAC1-4B78-4658-AFCF-2839D9DCDDA0.jpeg
 

Wilco 

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If OSR be aware it will set solid, fast.

Decided to extract a couple of supers as i'll be a champion bodybuilder if I had to keep lifting those off for each inspection! Very light straw coloured honey and a nice taste, i'm guessing mostly OSR? Water at 17.5% according to the refractometer.
40lbs in total and customers already clamouring for honey.
View attachment 31980
 

Moobee 

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If OSR be aware it will set solid, fast.
Any idea of main taste of OSR? The honey is very liquid, easy to decant and has shown no sign of crystallising yet (extracted on Wednesday) and only one comb out of 20 showed signs of it setting in situ. Think it might be partly not wholly which I hope makes a difference!
 

pargyle 

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Any idea of main taste of OSR? The honey is very liquid, easy to decant and has shown no sign of crystallising yet (extracted on Wednesday) and only one comb out of 20 showed signs of it setting in situ. Think it might be partly not wholly which I hope makes a difference!
OSR smells a bit cabbagy ... very bland taste. Not everyone likes it ... I'm not that keen on it personally. TBH yours does not look like OSR honey to me ....
 
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Inspections at my home apiary today were curtailed by sudden torrential rain. I really don't know what to make of one of my colonies though. I suspected it was queenless at my first inspection this year and I'm not seeing any reason to believe otherwise now. They've also gone from relatively placid to really quite feisty. No headbanging or stinging, but a few followed me for fifty-odd yards from the apiary until I got irritated and squished them.

The odd thing is that there are really still quite a lot of bees in the colony whereas I'd expect to have numbers dwindling quite significantly by now given that I believe they're all over-wintering bees.

I'm a bit pushed for time tomorrow and Friday, but I'm tempted to make one more inspection to see if there's anything I can have missed. Perhaps a separate thread is a better choice for discussing options there.

James
Think test frame again James to check. They’re living longer as if no brood to tend they don’t ‘wear out’ as quickly
I’ve found with mine if queenless, they become agitated but as soon as you give them some larva and they start to make cells they soon calm down. Also weather and storms really does impact and makes behaviour worse eg following. Especially if they’ve had a recent move as well.
Hope you can fix and they settle soon. Not pleasant in your own garden / space
 
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Caught and rehoused a swarm. Arrived on a bramble on a dry stone wall. Tried the old comb attraction technique to get them off the wall. Then balanced a brood box on top of the wall for a while and transferred to a Nuc. Lots of nasanoving going on at the entrance. Full 6 frames of bees by the end. Put on q/e setting. Following day, 3 out of 4 bees bringing in pollen and it felt heavy.
Know swarms are great for comb building and adding cells to but have enough of my own colonies at the moment
Checked all my colonies in the apiary the swarm came to, I knew the status of each hive so didn’t think it was mine and it wasn’t fortunately
Took to isolation apiary a friend has and gave to him. He’s been good to me with his time, advice and beekeeping tips and he wanted more bees
 

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Moobee 

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OSR smells a bit cabbagy ... very bland taste. Not everyone likes it ... I'm not that keen on it personally. TBH yours does not look like OSR honey to me ....
Oh that's good news. Not at all cabbagy in taste and definitely not bland so hopefully a mixture of spring stuff!
I don't fine filter it so it looks a little cloudy.
 

Nannysbees 

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Inspected all four hives, added a new queen after checking no eggs or qc. Bit of chalkbrood in one hive going to keep an eye on that. The other not putting stores in the super.all on a brood and a half. One of the hives had three supers full of nectar,5 capped frames. How different the hives are!!!! 🐝🐝🐝🐝
 

Moobee 

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So…… my lovely neighbours (who’s fence backs onto my hives) sent me a video as they thought my bees were swarming at 9.30am. He said they swirled around for a few minutes and then left!
Which has left me perplexed.
Hive 1 was a split from the 9th which I introduced a new queen to today and knocked down some sealed EQCs before I did so. No open QCs. Before that, no QCs.
Hive 2 was the other half of the split - double BB - (they balled & killed the queen after I had touched up her paintwork despite leaving her in the cage on top of the frames while it dried - about 5 minutes).
They had charged QCs on 12th (nothing sealed) so left a few of the best to make up nucs this week.
Hive 3 had been split on 2nd as we’re making swarm preps. Knocked down all sealed & unsealed QCs except best one and put Q in a nuc. QC hatched on 12th. Have been left to get on with it.
Nuc - Q still there, quite full but no QCs.

So how could any of them have swarmed? Nuc is the only Q+ box.

Any ideas anyone? Was it even my swarm? Or a mating flight??
So the mystery is solved I think. A swarm turned up same day at a local school (a very short flying distance from here and the direction they headed in). They then left a day later and landed in someone's garden in a large bush. He didn't do anything for two days (by which time they'd been soaked by a thunderstorm) and I got a call from the local warden asking me if I could collect them. Needless to say, before I could do anything, they swarmed off again so who knows where they've ended up!
 

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Clearing part of a fucshia hedge back and putting in some fencing/wind break to screen a new apiary, need to get the bees moved in ASAP. I hope it's a good site, lots of fields with scrub, no dairy farms so no ryegrass only fields. Lots of bramble and huge amounts of fucshia.
 

JamezF 

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Went to inspect and add supers to the hives I have at a local farm. The difference in how the colonies have built up compared with those I have at home is astonishing. They're absolutely rammed full of bees. They're not even two miles away, but 45m lower on a south-facing slope well-sheltered from the north and from the prevailing winds whereas mine are sheltered from pretty much nothing whatsoever.

One colony was a bit irritable and I had to walk about 100 yards away before they'd leave me alone after closing up the hive, but the chances of finding the queen to replace her at the moment are very slim so I'll have to deal with that another time. I can't smoke them through a QX because there's no space to do it. The others I'm quite tempted to make up some nucs from, though they'd have to come back here because there's no space for more hives at the site. There is a large conifer in the field I use for access and I'm tempted to speak to the owner about putting a bait hive on a platform strapped to the trunk.

I ran out of supers in the end (not completed enough frames yet -- a job for this evening), so I'll have to go back in the next couple of days to finish off.

I didn't get around to checking over the colony I have at home that I believe is queenless. That's the priority for tomorrow.

James
 

MrGoat 

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Inspected three of my hives today. 2 are overwintered mongrel NUCs I bought ( which have a lovely temperament ) and they are flying. Each due another super during the week. The other is the AMM swarm I caught 2 weeks ago who also have impressed with the amount of foundation drawn, the queen is now laying and has a lovely brood pattern and will be getting a super tomorrow to keep them busy.

I have lots of scout bee interest in my bait hives today, the next few days don't seem too promising weather wise in this part of the country so not sure I'll get full time lodgers this week.
 

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Inspected three of my hives today. 2 are overwintered mongrel NUCs I bought ( which have a lovely temperament ) and they are flying. Each due another super during the week. The other is the AMM swarm I caught 2 weeks ago who also have impressed with the amount of foundation drawn, the queen is now laying and has a lovely brood pattern and will be getting a super tomorrow to keep them busy.

I have lots of scout bee interest in my bait hives today, the next few days don't seem too promising weather wise in this part of the country so not sure I'll get full time lodgers this week.
Poor weather bodes well for lots of swarms in a few weeks though.
 

Moobee 

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Released the new queen from Payne’s from her cage as a dead bee was blocking the entrance. The bees looked excited to see her and she immediately started inspecting cells and laying. Looking promising….
 

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Is it normal to get approx a handful of dying or dead bees at the hive entrance a week? It looks like they can't make it
inside rather than being kicked out and takes a long time for them to die. Can't recognize any disease or reasons.
Am new so wonder if there is reason to worry or not.
 

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TomH 

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Is it worth opening too entrances in an abelo poly hive?

Would usually put it in the unnecessary fiddling category… especially after watching them propolise up the crown board vent they clearly don’t appreciate a draft above them.

Only reason I ask is it’s a big colony, over a national deep and three shallows (no queen excluder). Lots of fanning as they’re trying to dry out and cap the supers.

Just wondered if opening the top entrance would help. Instinct is just to leave them be…
 

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@BoStor

If a queen lays up to 2000 eggs a day that means that in around 9 weeks (3 weeks to emerge and 6 weeks if they're lucky), approximately 2000 bees a day will die. Every day.
 
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Is it normal to get approx a handful of dying or dead bees at the hive entrance a week? It looks like they can't make it
inside rather than being kicked out and takes a long time for them to die. Can't recognize any disease or reasons.
Am new so wonder if there is reason to worry or not.
Most of those are drones.

Sometimes a hive will decide that it can't sustain the number of drones it has, and will kick some out. They hang around the entrance until they starve and die. I suspect that's a large part of what you are seeing.
 

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