Thursday, 24 September 2009

Bee Update

Since last bee blog entry...( written by S )

- Moved to Modbuy to escape wasps.
- Queen laying slowly due to time of year and low number of bees to keep brood warm but they are slowly increasing ( I think ).
- Don't want to risk main hive by taking bees/brood from it to bolster nuc.
- Was being fed fondant but taking it very slowly so now trying sugar syrup.
- Working nearby ivy for both pollen and nectar
- Ordered a poly nuc. box from plan to move nuc. into it and indoors through the winter

Main Hive:
- Expanding rapidly since requeening, strongest I've had a hive this year
- Still haven't seen the queen since she was introduced, she is marked but in a dull green colour

- Currently in second period of Apiguard varroa treatment, a little later than ideal but held back due to that fact the it can put the queen off laying and wanted to increase population as much as possible
- To use apiguard the entrance block was left in (it was in to help against the wasps), the mesh floor was blocked off and a 2 inch 'eke' was made so that when the apigaurd tray is put directly onto the top of the brood frames there is room between it and the crown board or feeder.
- The first apiguard tray was put in 2 weeks ago and left for 2 weeks, it has just been taken out and replaced with a second tray which will be left in for another 2 weeks

- Bringing in loads of ivy pollen
- Making the most of the good weather flying early and late

- Taken almost 3 gallons of 2:1 sugar solution in 5 days from a homemade miller feeder
- The homemade feeder is my own variation of a miller feeder. It is a 3 inch deep box, the size of the hive - 460mm x 460mm - with a line of holes along the center of the base.
Inside a pair of walls and baffles allow the bees access to the sugar syrup whilst keeping it out of the hive.
All joints are glued and screwed and the inside of the box painted to make it waterproof. (primer, 2 x undercoat, 2 x gloss with dry sand sprinkled into the gloss where the bees walk to give them more grip.)

- Hive buzzing loudly with bees ventilating, trying to reduce the water content of the stored syrup, some bees can bee seen fanning at the entrance.
- Odd wasp still around but no hope of getting into hive

- Took advantage of a deal struck by the BBKA and Bookers Cash and Carry allowing beekeepers to register with them. Bought 25kg of sugar for £13.99

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