Bees are doing well
I looked in on the bees today. It was ideal weather – hot and sunny – and the bees were quite busy doing what they do. As usual, Joni was taking pictures for me and toward the end one bee was buzzing around her a bit too closely for her comfort and she started doing the bee dance – waving frantically and hopping around yelping. The end result was a minor sting. She never found a stinger and doesn’t remember actually feeling the sting, but after a few minutes found a spot on her arm where she was stung. Despite taking one for the team, she got some nice shots of the bi-weekly examination.
I have been trying to feed the bees every week, but only opening the inner cover to examine the frames every other week. I always seem to start with the B hive (Boston) which is the more developed hive and then when I get to the A hive (Anaheim) I am a bit disappointed. So next time, I want to remember to open Anaheim first.
Boston looked great. Lots of bees on the top of all the frames and all frames with at least some development. This was good progress since week six. The two outer frames still have lots of comb to go, but it got me wondering when or if I should put on another box. I need to read up on mid summer maintenance. Do keepers add boxes or supers this late in the season? Do I need to worry about a swarm?
Anaheim is behind, but only about two to four weeks. Hopefully both hives will be strong by the fall and will overwinter. I didn’t want to take the time to find the queens, as both hives looked like they were maintaining good brood frames. Also each hive still has a frame of honey although there were bees on them and they weren’t full. I suppose that the bees have been using some of the honey. I hope this is normal but I don’t really know.
Both feeder boxes were empty. This has been working nicely because when I fill them back up with my 1 : 1.5 sugar mix (1 cup of sugar to 1.5 cups of water), I flush out a few small hive beetles which I can then get rid of usually bysmashing them with my hive tool. I am assuming that just a few SHBs is normal and not something to worry about. I keep saying that I am going to make some traps, but I haven’t done it yet. I haven’t seen any sign of damage to comb or brood. Joni got a short video which I will post.