Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Bee Update

I did a quick checkup on the bee ladies last week. I almost don't want to say this, in fear that something terrible is going to happen...but: all three hives looked good. Our Mud Honey hive is giant; I found the number of bees to be rather overwhelming. Didn't see the queen, but she had a good egg laying pattern. We also have three honey supers on that hive so I'm hoping that the colony feels that it has adequate space to continue growing and storing honey. Please don't swarm.

Our Blue Moon hive was also looking good. They recently released their new queen from her cage and she had just begun to place some eggs in the prepared cells. We were initially worried that this hive was honey-bound, meaning that the queen had no place to lay her eggs because they frames were filled with honey, but she has an excellent space in the lower deep. We're keeping our fingers crossed.
Most pleasing of all, our swarm hive queen (the former Blue Moon queen) is doing well and has an excellent egg laying pattern. Check out the capped brood (above). It doesn't get much more complete than that!
I also snapped a few (somewhat fuzzy) pictures of a new worker been emerging from her cell. She has chewed most of the way through the cap and is making her way into the world.

We have one family member that is definitely not pleased with our bees. Bailey. Perhaps it is his bear-like appearance, but whenever he wanders into close proximity of the hives, the guards zoom over and badger him mercilessly. He, too, has been stung a few times. Nowadays, when we prepare to open up the hives, he turns tail and seeks shelter as far as possibly from the angry bee ladies, in this case: inside the house, upstairs, down the hall, in the bathroom, and behind the toilet. Poor old dog.