Weekly Inspection- 9th May

Weather has continued cold, only now starting to warm up. Temps around 12C.

Still plenty of forage in flower: apple, dandelion, hawthorn, oilseed rape (not near me though)

Put out the bait hive – seen plenty of bees checking it out, which is a good sign as I don’t have bees in my home apiary site.

Weekly Inspection 1st May

Weather still chilly, but dry. Temperature around 10C

lots of forage: wild garlic, cherry, apple, blackthorn nearly finished

just checking that the colonies are expanding. Weather turned as the inspection progressed- started racing, so didn’t manage to inspect last colony Aqua

Weekly Inspection – April 14th

Decided to check on colonies to see if they are coming into Spring in good shape. 2 of the 3 are doing OK and 1 looks to be struggling. Topped up feed for 2 colonies as they were low on stores.

Weather is very variable – some very sunny days but temperatures are still cold 7-8C most days. Also overnight temperatures getting down to freezing. Forecast is to start warming up.

plenty of blossom – pear, quince nearly finished. Cherry still around and hawthorn is out.

First Weekly Inspection – 2nd April

weather has been very chilly at times and also some bright sunny days with the warmest March day for more than 50 years. Forecast is for it go very cold again with some freezing overnight temperatures. Lots§ of forage – including cherry Hawthorn (very early), camellia, tulips, goat willow catkins.

Bees had taken down a lot of the Ambrosia but have slowed down this past week. Not much in the way of stores in the colonies, so need to keep an eye out for any hint of starvation signs.

Colony Inspection 28th May

weather back to normal for time of year – temperatures up to 18C.

 

flowering: chesnut finishing, wisteria, thyme and elder just starting

 

Blue – new colony from Wilson/Pagden has built QCs on frame from Aqua after colony was re-arranged and old queen moved to nuc. Also Denim has started swarming with 4 charged QCs, so took all down and will introduce a sealed QC from Blue.

2nd June – Aqua – cut out a sealed QC and put into Denim. Moved Denim queen to nuc and put in River Mole site, added sealed QC plus 3 frames foundation to replace frames added to nuc. Took down all sealed and unsealed QCs – also removed DT and found 50 in 200 mites – so will need to consider treating. But may get away with it as there will be a period of no new brood because of re-queening activity.

Colony Inspection – 18th May

weather improving and ghetto get warmer – 15C. Still below average. Wilson ref-queening may not have worked. Certainly old Aqua colony still intent on swarming. So decided mid-week to move Aqua to nuc and took to River Mole site. Aqua has 2 BIAS plus 2 frames of stores, and 1 of foundation. Put new colony (Blue) onto stand, still no sign of laying queen.

 

Flowering: Chesnut, wisteria and poppy

Colony Inspection – 10th May

Weather has started to warm up and temperatures are returning to normal – around 15C. Weather has been changeable with some heavy showers.

 

still lots of blossom – Chestnut now in full bloom, thyme, lilac

Colony Inspection – 6th May

Weather distinctly cooler – temperatures around 10-12C, so much colder than normal. A still lots of blossom – Lilac, Wisteria, OSR in countryside.

Did final manipulation on Aqua, so will now leave for 2 weeks before opening up again. Lots of scrub small size QCs + 1 nice size sealed cell – so took it down to just this one.

Colony Inspection 28th April

Weather has started to turn cooler. Still plenty of forage around. Went back through Aqua to check on swarming activity and found 3 charged QCs – so started with the modified Wilson/manipulation process I use. Bees were also very nasty – followers.

Examined Mole River apiary site after 2 weeks and was pleasantly surprised at how well the colonies are doing.

Put out the bait hive with 4 old frames from the Blue deadout.

Colony Inspection 24th April

Inspected the home colonies after being away over Easter. Weather has been very warm and a lot of plants in flower: Dandelion, apple, buddleia just starting. The forecast is set to get much colder so it’s just as well the bees seem to have been bringing in plenty of stores.

Colonies are expanding nicely and Aqua is close to running out of laying space. Adding first of supers which is earlier than normal.

Need to clean up some of last years frames to allow for colony expansion.