Sunday, May 4, 2008

Despite my lack of updates, much is going on

I have been very remiss in keeping this blog updated. My bees have actually been keeping me fairly busy. To recap, there were two major events that happened in my apiary recently. The first is that I pulled a four frames of my main hive (one with a queen cell) to start a second hive and to possibly prevent a swarm. The second major event is that my main hive swarmed anyway.

This leaves me with two challenges. Number one, I must make sure both hives requeen themselves. Number two, I want to try to get a honey crop off of hive #1 even though this is more difficult after a swarm.

I think getting a crop of honey off the main hive will be very possible, mainly because I simply pulled the honey super off of that hive and moved a medium super that was sandwiched between two deeps and being used as a brood chamber to the top of the hive. I put a queen excluder beneath the medium super, and hopefully some honey is on its way. To my surprise, the medium super had hardly any brood in it and already had a good bit of honey.

I'll have to wait and see about challenge number one, making sure both hives requeen properly. I did not thoroughly inspect hive #1 because the weather was a bit chilly, so I did not see a queen or eggs in that one, but I will be able to better assess the situation after a thorough inspection. I did thoroughly inspect hive #2, and no queen or eggs was present, although the queen cell had hatched. I also spotted an emergency queen cell. I would expect the queen that hatched to be laying eggs by next weekend, so I know more at that time.
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