Sunday, August 8, 2010

Bee Concerned

We went into the hive yesterday. The idea was to check on honey stores and see if we would be in a position to try and harvest some honey at the end of the month.

But their progress has been less than stellar. When we added the third super, the bees had quickly filled the first two. Honey was copious and I was really excited about their progress. This time was different.

While I was feeling much better about handling the bees and the frames and such (I'm still not bare handed), the bees hadn't moved into the third super.

The bottom two were full of capped honey. The bees were building everywhere, but they had not moved up at all. My son and I were both surprised and disappointed.

I've read that sometimes the worker bees don't know to move up when you add a new super, so I moved some of the filled honey comb up a level, in hopes that the bees would do the same.

I was hoping to treat for mites and disease in the beginning of September, after we harvested just a few pounds of honey. Unless something big happens, I don't know that we will get any honey. My son was counting on getting some this year. He wanted to give it as presents for Christmas.

Would the bees go into overdrive if I started feeding right now? I don't know. But I might try it.


Albert A Rasch said...

Couple of things you can try.

Put the super between the brood box, and the filled supers.

Pull every other filled frame, and replace with empty frames.

Pull the filled super, and start feeding sugar water. You keep the good honey, and let them make honey out of the sugar water for their stores during the winter.

North Carolina... When the new wax starts to be built, (Last week of January, first week of Feb where I live.) You need to feed, and add frames to the brood boxes to build up a large colony of bees for the year. You will ahve to investigate when the bees make white wax in your neck of the woods.

I wish I had my links here. I have some Document files that you should have also.

By the way, start going bare handed. Yes you will get stung every now and again, but you will kill less bees, and you and the girls will be much calmer.

Email me if you have any questions!

The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles: PeTA Gets Its Just Dessert, One Child at a Time

Maybe there's not enough nectar out there, that's a posibility.

Doug said...

Thanks Albert!

I have replaced (just about)every other honey frame with an empty one. I'm going to check on their progress in about a week and then possibly move more. I think I'm going to feed in the meantime. It can only help.

I'll keep you posted.

Does it bother them if you move the supers and brood boxes around too much?

Woodduck said...

Good luck with your hives. I did find some local honey. A young lady from Wanchese(Tracy Helton)and Wayne Rose from Roper sell good honey. Picked up some bee pollen from Tracy H. at the little outdoor market across from Colony Tire. S'posed to 'bee' good for my alergies.