Thursday, April 21, 2011

April inspections

We did an inspection of the bee hives on April 11th.  It was a very warm day.  Aggie had been concerned that her bees were gone up until this day.  

The first 5 pictures are from our friend, Aggie's bee hive.  You can see her bees are very busy.  The hive looks to be healthy.  We added a super after this inspection so they will have room above to put the honey and room below to raise the brood. 

Now we go to our two hives.  The yellow one has been the strongest in the past.  We found a lot of dead bees from the winter.  We do not know if this is more than expected as this is our first year as beekeepers.

This is an example of the frames in the yellow hive.  Plenty of honey in the top but not much in the way of brood.  We did not see the queen but we often did not last year.  There were a number of live bees but now near as many as we saw in Aggie's hive.

These are from the green hive which has been our weaker hive.  We did see the queen a few weeks ago but it does not look like she has been very busy laying eggs.  Again, plenty of honey.  The bees all looked healthy.  There were no obvious signs of disease or infestation.  The green hive did have a spider and some webs in the bottom which may have been from was moths but not an infestation. 

 The bees you see here are dead, probably starved in the winter.  If they cannot get to the honey, they starve.

Can you see the concern on the inspectors' faces?

What now? 
We will wait another week and do another inspection.  We see bees coming and going every day that it is warm.  We can hope that the queens are still there and are getting busy.

Stay tuned.

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