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Saturday, April 28, 2012

BeeYard Update

Today, Aaron & I went to the farm in the afternoon to install the new swarm from Louisville and to check on the nucs.  Aaron's nuc, which was from the Funkhouser Cutout, was busting with bees, so we moved it to a regular deep hive body and stuck an internal mason jar feeder on it.  I then installed the Sauers swarm into that nuc box.  The other nucs still had room to grow, so I left them alone just replenishing the the sugar water feeders.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Swarm Updates

Even though I haven't been posting for a while on this blog, April has been a busy month for beekeeping.  Let's see if I can keep it all straight and document it here.

I started off on March 25th splitting Hive #4 (old East Hive) and creating 2 nucs because of swarm cells in the hive.  Eventually one of these nucs died out because the queen cell didn't hatch.

On March 26th I received a call for a hive extraction from at tree bulldozed down by Mike Ellis.  Unfortunately, I didn't get the queen, and I had to place a queen cell from Hive #4 in the nuc.

On April 7th Aaron, Nicolas, and myself extracted a hive from an outbuilding in rural Funkhouser.  I have to apologize that I forgot the home owner's name...I need to make a couple of phone calls to find out!

On Friday, April 20th, I helped Jonathan Donaldson capture his first swarm that was moving into a Hummer at the Effingham City Hall.

The next day, on April 21th, we received a call from a farmer in the Silver Lake subdivision reporting that there was a swarm on a 5-bottom plow.  Dawn and I went out, and Dawn lead the capture....she did a great job!  Due to the cold temperature the swarm had broken into three clumps...below is the upper clump.  We used the vacuum to retrieve the rest of the bees.

On Thursday, April 26th, I received a call at work for a swarm near Dexter.  I drove out to the Laue Farm and retrieved a swarm from their park bench in the front yard.

Today, April 27th, we received a call from the Sauers Family in Louisville reporting a swarm on a tractor tire sandbox in their backyard. 

What an amazing month for swarms and there are 3 days left.....more to come!!!!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Hive Updates

Just some quick updates on the beeyard.  I went up this evening and decided to check on the three nuc boxes.  The 2 splits were doing great with a good queen cell in nuc.  The Ellis Nuc did not have any queen or queen cells, so I decided to put a frame of eggs in the nuc for them to raise their own.  I dug into the  old East Hive (#4) to find a frame and guess what I found???  A capped queen cell!!!  That hive is bound a determined to swarm!  So, I pulled that frame and the nurse bees and placed them in the Ellis Nuc.  I also pulled out the feeders from the established hives and stuck honey supers on all the hives except the Court House Swarm hive, which is still week. 

In this photo, my girls didn't know where to build their honey comb!

Also, while examining my some of my photos I found varroa mites on my bees!!!  I've never seen them on a bee before, and it was quite a surprise to spot them like this.  The mites are behind the heads of the upper right bee and the second from the bottom left.