Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Nucleus Hive

Got up at 3:30 this morning, to be on the road at 4:00 to be at BetterBee at 6:30! Yikes.

I picked up my nucleus hive and my stuff (after some confusion about what exactly I ordered and what was in my pile of stuff). Then, the girls and I were back on the road and on the way home.

I got ALL my stuff together (and whoever said beekeeping was easy, has never suited up in 90 degree weather and tried to maneuver boxes and frames and smokers and tools and cameras--I was alone today so the pictures aren't that exciting this time) and headed over to my aunt's to look at the swarm hive and set up the nuc hive. The swarm hive has lots of little itty bitty eggs in it, so she either has a queen or a laying worker (which is pretty much doom for the hive as laying workers only lay drones, which are male bees, and are useless to a hive). But I'm gonna wait and see and HOPE she's a queen! That would be AWESOME!

The nuc hive, I set up beside the swarm hive (where the smaller swarm hive was before). I transferred the five frames into the middle of the deep super and put in five more empty frames on the sides of the five built up frames from the nuc box. I tried to dump all of the bees out of the nuc box into the hive, as you can not leave the nuc box in the bee yard or sometimes the bees move back into it--that was a challenge and some bee deaths inevitably happened. I just hope the queen is OK! I checked for larva and eggs, closed them up, and put on a feeder for them. Now, we just wait and see and check back.

So, it looks like we have two more hives for the season. The swarm hive is hive 'C' and the nuc is hive 'D'.

C names: Cookies, Camie, or Chalice...so far...
D names: Doughnuts...
HELP!!! Any thoughts? Ideas?

After I set up and looked at the hives at my aunt's, I got into the hives here. The picture on the bottom shows Avalon just barely beginning to build up some comb in the honey supers...but not much more is going on in there. You can see the empty frames inside the box, below the frame in my hand. I guess it takes a lot of work just to build up the wax framework for the honey, before they can even think about storing excess honey in there for us. It'll be nice when we have already drawn out comb to use in our honey supers. It'll save the bees a lot more time in the following seasons. I guess it's a hobby of patience...

but I am content.

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