Monday, November 17, 2008

Quick Robin, to the bat house!

Since cold weather is coming on, there is not much going on with the bees other than what is discussed in the post below. One of the things I have been wanting to get for awhile is a bat house. The models that were available at the local outdoor stores did not impress me. So, I checked this book out from the library and used it to make my own bat house.

I made the whole thing out of some leftover cedar boards and plywood from a construction project. The only thing I had to buy was some $4.99 red stain for the plywood parts. I can't wait until spring to put it out and see if some bats take up residence.

Below is a shot of the four inner chambers. There is only 3/4 of an inch between them, but that's enough for the bats:

Bee update

My original hive has plenty of honey and is hunkered down for the winter. They are most likely going to be fine.

Some bad news on the front of hive number two, however. The hive is situated on a place on my property where I do not see it everyday. I went out one Saturday morning to check on it, and it had been knocked over onto its side. I have no idea how long it was like that, and it rained the day before. When I put it upright, it felt much lighter than I expected, which indicates that the bees may not have enough stores for the winter. I have not inspected the hive, but I think that the queen is still alive because the hive is generally quiet and appears to be acting normal. Even if being knocked over does not do them in, lack of food probably will. I'll try to do some emergency feeding over the winter and see what happens. I have heard that fondant makes good emergency bee feed.