Monday, May 27, 2013

2nd Hive Inspection

These are the latest pictures as of 5/27/2013.  I did my 2nd hive inspection.  Bees are looking good and working hard.

Bees bees and more bees

The camera cut off the feeder pail, but I'm lifting it.

Bees and wax.  The frame is heavy.  This is a new hive and the bees need to build out the wax foundation.  They need lots of syrup to help them build faster.

If you look close you will see larva in the cells.  They are white and shaped like a  "c".

Marking the Queen haven't named them yet.  Other bee's kept jumping on the marker.

Lifting inner cover.

Prying inner cover off.

Frames with bees

It's the Queen (-: She's fast.

Monday, May 13, 2013

1st Hive Inspection

Hello, here are some pictures of the latest check on the hives.  I hope you like them!


Smoking the hive

Dad lifting feeder pail

Using hive tool to pry the frames

Lift frames

Comb! : )

Left space in middle of frames so bees built comb

Eggs (camera person thought we were talking about the pollen )
not the best pic eggs hard to see

Bees with comb

Pollen , sugar water, and comb

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Interesting article in the Startribune

Here is an interesting article about the disappearance of honeybees.   It is hard not to be fascinated by the bees and all that they do.  Even if you can't stand bugs and feel that the honeybee is just another bug, it is hard to argue their worth to society.  They pollinate much of our food and help keep our ecosystem in balance.  If you have read Zander's blog you can probably tell that he is passionate about insects and wants to do his part to help ensure the honeybees don't disappear completely.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently released a study about what they think is leading to the significant decline in honeybees.  That study states that there are multiple reasons for the decline and oh by the way pesticides are way down the list.  I can't help but disagree.  The food system in the U.S. has some significant problems.  It is tremendously productive but it is not sustainable.  If you travel to any rural area of the country you will find very little diversity in crops.  Lots and lots of "monoculture".  Corn as far as the eye can see.  All the seed for that corn produced by one or two companies.  Finding corn seed that isn't covered in neonicotinoids is nearly impossible.  Unlike traditional pesticides, these fine chemicals stay in the plants throughout the life of the plant.  Great for keeping pests away but bad in the long run you you and I.

Please give it a read...

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Both queens have been released

We went out at 1:00 pm to check on the 2nd hive.  That went smoother then the first hive.  We had opened up the entrance to the 2nd hive earlier.  I checked and there were lots of bees under the feeder pail.  This time we didn't drop the queen cage but she hadn't been released yet.  It had been 24 hours and they still didn't release her.  I got a nail and pulled a little of the marshmallow out so it was looser.  Then I closed up the hive and came back at 4:00 pm and they had finally released the queen.  I closed up the hive and let the bees do what bees do.

Gary and Gail came over and I showed them the bee yard and showed them how the bees come in a package and how you release them.  They were afraid of getting stung so they left.  

Dad went to the hardware store and got a cheap electric fence tester.  He couldn't get it working so he thought the fence wasn't working.  He touched the fence and found out that it was working fine.  I think Dad will buy a more expensive tester next time.

Here are some pictures of the hives...
My bees getting their orientation flights in.

Both packages of bees are in.

Another picture of the bees flying back to the hive.

1st hive is now open

I just got back form taking grass out of the entrance.  We also learned we need a smoker.  We saw the queen was released and bees are doing well.  We lit the smoker for the first time gong to do the second hive after lunch ( ;

Dropped the queen cage in the bottom of the hive and we had to fish it out.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

The bees have been hived!

My dad and I bringing the bees out.  We picked them up Friday night and kept them in the cabin all night.

Taking the queen out of the package.  I'm holding my hand over the hole so the bees don't fly out.
Queen in her special case.  She comes in her own cage so the other bees get used to her.  We removed the cork and put a marshmallow in the hole.  Then the bees eat the marshmallow and release the queen.
Dad spraying syrup on the frames while I get the bees ready to dump in.

Taking the plug out of the queen case.  We then plugged it with a mini-marshmallow.  It will take the bees about 3 hours to get her out
Dumping bees into the hive
It was hard to get the bees to go in the hive.  Had to knock them in.

Moving the bees so we can get the frames it.  You can't see it very well but there were about 3-4 inches of bees in a big pile in the bottom of the hive.
Putting feeder on hive.  Tomorrow I'll check to see if they are under the feeder.

Closed the hive.  We will check it tomorrow.  Hopefully it warms up.  It was about 38 F when we put the bees in.  Some of them got cold and didn't make it.

we just got the bees in the hive. it was fun! : ) hope u have a nice day

Friday, May 3, 2013

The Bees have arrived!

The bees arrived early.  We got 2 - 3 pound packages of bees.  They like to cling to the walls of the package.  There were about 15 bees outside of the package so dad now has bees in his car : }.  We will be driving up to Hinckley tonight and will install them tomorrow.