Thursday, June 18, 2009

Hive Update

I'm still waiting for swarm photos. Sorry for the delay. In the meantime, here is a quick update on the State o' the Hives. Last time I posted bee news, our Blue Moon Hive had swarmed and we'd captured the swarm into an empty bee box. Initially, we wanted to combine the swarm hive and the original Blue Moon back together in the old location in an effort to save on equipment and keep our time commitment reasonable. After consulting with various folks, however, it became clear that combining the hives back together was a wee bit risky and frankly, we should get used to the fact that we now had three good hives. So I trucked down to Lakewood to pick up more equipment from a delightful old man named Harvard (thanks to David for the resource!). On Tuesday I spent the day putting the new frames together and adding boxes onto the existing hives.

Here is our new swarm hive [above]. We need to think of a good name for it. Also, I saw our old marked queen in the swarm hive laying eggs, a good sign [top photo]. This is actually the first time that I've seen her as she proved quite elusive while living in the Blue Moon Hive.

As for the Mud Honey hive, I think things are going well although I can't be certain. We had placed our queen within a large wire cage attached to one of the frames.

Last time we looked, it appeared that the hive had accepted her since they were feeding her and didn't appear to be exhibiting aggressive behavior. When I checked this week, they had freed her from her cage by eating away the confining comb. Those crafty bees! I wanted to give her a bit of space so I refrained from pulling apart the hive to get visual confirmation of her existence. We're keeping our fingers crossed on this one.

These ladies are still a little testy; they're probably ticked off from having their hive torn asunder so many times. As I turned away from taking this picture, one of the guard bees zipped over and stung me on the cheek. Hump. A little too cheeky, if you ask me.
Posted by Picasa