Initial Inspection for 2024 Season


The early Spring weather has been very poor – lots of rain and cool temperature. Only now – mid-April have the temperatures started to get to 15°C. I decided to feed all of the colonies with Ambrosia and most took down 1Kg and 2  got through 1.5Kg.

Nearly had a swarm with Cyan which is the largest colony – 2 capped cells but queen and eggs present. If I had left it another day I think it would have tried to swarm despite queen being clipped. Lack of space likely to be the main trigger.

Needed to move the colony at my out apiary to a new position. As it was around 20m I’ve brought it back home for 3-4 weeks and will then move it back to its new position. Have moved Honeydew to the out apiary as I wanted more colonies at a 2nd site as a backup.

Given the reports of queen cells also being found by other beekeepers I have put out my bait hive which is earlier than I normally would.

Deadouts: Emerald – was a strong colony going into Winter. Seems to have petered out with only a few bees on the frames. Lots of stores left.

Blue – lots of dead bees on the floor, none on the frames. Was alive  early Spring and had taken 1/4 block of Ambrosia down.

Forage: Lots of blossom out, strawberries already flowering  and dandelion in abundance.

Hive Record
CommentNext Inspection
AquaNNNo brood, few drone cells - queenlessplenty in brood boxplenty of bees so decided to unite with Greencheck unite successful
CyanYY8 frames BIAS including eggs on 14x12, but loads of charged queen cells including 2 capped.lot in the brood frames - no space for queen to laytook down most of the queen cells and decided to do a Snelgrove Mod 2 manipulation with split boardcheck in 9 days on 20th April and change brood boxes around.
DenimNY6 BIAS plus some in the eke used for fondant. lots of eggsplenty in brood boxsaw 3 varroa in drone brood in the eke space.add super frame for drone brone uncapping activity, check expansion
GreenNY4 BIAS plus eke space filled with brood mainly drone. lots of eggsplenty in brood box and ekeUnited with Aqua plus added supercheck on unite and whether needs rearranging or even splitting
FlaxNY4 BIAS and lots of eggs.OK for storesnice temper, moved to River Mole apiary siteCheck for queen
HoneydewNY2 frames of BIAS, nice patternNot much, but bringing in nectarMoved from river Mole site back home - re-positioingCheck for queen and expansion