Some cool photos from various cutouts...bees in unwanted places...
Some links to videos I captured recently;
May 5, 2012
Wow, went from 3 colonies to 13 colonies in a little over 2 weeks! Extremely busy time for a beekeeper. Several cutouts, several swarms, and lots of stuff to do.
March 13, 2012
Spring is coming!
Lost two of 5 Colonies this year, not too bad, considering no treatment of any pests, and no feeding of any kind. Both colonies starved, although one had several supers of honey full frames, but a good sized pattern of capped brood with no honey in the immediate area of 2-3" around the cluster. This occurred in February when there was a cold snap....it happens.
Good news is that I received a call from someone(thanks Peggy) who cut a large tree down and lo and behold, honeybees! Only problem was that is was very cold that week and snowing...so I decided to bring the bee tree home with me. After a very strenuous wrestling match with the tree (4' tall by 18" diameter), I was able to bring it home, and uprighted it.
August 15, 2011
Hive #1 has superceded JTQueen #30...she never got much going, so we'll see if the new queen does any better.
Extracted honey from #2 and #3 YEAH!....lots of honey still to be capped on these though....is the high humidity making it difficult to dry out the honey?
Top Bar experiment is going fairly well...THey have built comb on a good number of top bars, now the trick is to get them to build one solid comb on the bar parallel to the bar, instead of "sheets" of several comb running at a 15° angle to the top bars.
PS#1 Nuc is looking great - 4 full frames of brood, nice pattern, added a nuc super...looks like the queen cell made a nice queen.
PS#2 JT Queen #73 seems to be laying a good pattern now. Will probably start to feed next week
PS#3 Queen is building up again...hopefully she has another fall/winter/spring build up in her.
July 18, 2011
Another cutout. Decent sized cutout even though they were only there a few months (color of comb verified the owner's assesment of timing). Removed the queen, vacuumed bees and brought them home. I decided to put them into the TBH (not the best idea in hindsight, as I was only able to get a small amount of the brood comb I successfully removed onto the topbars with any strength). Placed the queen in, and dumped the bees into the box. We'll see how this experiment goes. Well call this Hive #4.
July 16, 2011
Rundown of colonies Hive 1 - Queen is out and laying JT#30 Fed bees with some sugar syrup. We'll monitor her progress with crossed fingers.
Hive 2 - Lots of bees, and a good amount of honey. Need to get in there to see how the new queen (hopefully) is doing....I still need to determine when a good time would be to do this...have not had time to do the math.
Hive 3 - Added some honey supers on the colony - hopefully with a little extra room (removed three frames) and the super, maybe they'll change their mind on the swarming thing.
PS(alternate apiary) #1 - Nuc box with bees, and added queen cups....hopefully not damaged too badly...need to see the progress here
PS#2 - JT Queen #73 and added two frames of bees from HIve #3. Need to check on her status.
PS#3 - Split with old queen from Hive #2. Will she build up again?
July 11, 2011
Found queen in Hive #2 - removed her and placed into a deep with 3-4 frames of brood and replaced with foundation.
July 10, 2011
Added 3 frames of brood and bees to the Nuc 1 split with JT queen#30 , sprayed them all down with honey bee healty/sugar water - Thanks Buzz - and moved them to the other bee yard.
Hive #2 - TONS of bees!! queen cells with larvae are present in at least 1 cup. The medium with cutout comb on the bottom, is almost packed full exclusively with pollen. Couldn't find queen to remove her and make a split - these bees are definitly BWA. Will try again tomorrow.
Hive 3 - packed with brood and drawing out comb on medium. Swarm cells were present - no larvae yet...removed 3 frames of brood etc for JT queen- above and added a honey super with partially drawn comb.
Dirty split appears to have no queen - they did not rais one. Attempted to remove a queen cell or two from Hive #2 and place into this nuc box...The surgery was a little botched...the cells I chose to remove were right smack on a piece of wire in the frame...lesson learned.
July 30, 2011
Hive 1 - still aggressive on queen cage. Will take tape off on sunday (2 weeks after introduction)
Nuc 1 (split from #3) with JT queen - she's not released yet - but things are cool there....not a lot of bees there though. will release her on 7-3 if they have't let her out yet.
June 26, 2011
Hive 1 - new queen not accepted yet. supercedure cell present - removed it. Lots of biting at the queen cage.
Hive 2 - Lots of bees still. Queen moved back down to lower deep - new eggs present there and capped brood in top deep. These are certainly BWA - Bees with attitude - I wouldn't say they are the gentlest bees I've seen, but they seem to be go getters. Tried to make a dirty split with 1 frame of capped brood, 1 frame of eggs, and 1 frame of honey/pollen and placed into a nuc box and took to a second apiary location I just was able to negotiate.
Hive 3 - Bottom deep full with brood of all variety. Not drawing a ton in the medium super. THe top deep was mostly empty as well. I reversed the two deeps (empty one on bottom, medium w/ foundation, and deep with brood on top) Finally got a real bottom board and covers for this hive also (I had to makeshift a bottom board and top for a while :))
June 21, 2011
Made a split from the hive #3 - swarm colony - most of the bees are migrating back to the original colony, but a fair amount have stayed. Added a JT queen to the colony in cage #73
Hive 1 - killed old queen - removed her and watched her for a while...she seemed to have a damaged wing...not sure if she might have been beaten up during the cutout - I found her on the ground when I was cleaning up the debris at the end of the cutout....she's now gone, and placed the JT queen in her place #30 -
June 18, 2011
Hive 1 has brood and larva, but a very small pattern on only 1-2 frames. will be replacing queen with JT queen this week,
Hive 2 is jammed packed with bees! Drawing out the medium super nicely, and filling with nectar. Top deep has lots of eggs. bottom deep full of capped brood. Placed two shallow supers on, with partially drawn comb.
Hive 3 has lots of capped brood. deep is mostly full - added a second deep and a medium super with foundation.
June 4, 2011
First cutout(#1) - united with 2nd queenless cutout - bees are doing ok, but the queen is just not getting on with laying any significant amount of eggs. Waiting patiently for the JT queens.
Large cutout(#2) - cutout brood are hatching, and lots of eggs in the deep and lots of bees. Added another deep with drawn frames and a medium with foundation.
Caught a swarm(#3) today from a tree in Medina city - pretty high up in a tree ~18 feet up. Good size swarm. Hived them in a deep with 50% drawn comb.
May 29, 2011
Removed an absolutely enormous colony from a porch roof in west Akron. Colony was there for at least four years. Comb was packed into a cavity 24" x 5-6' and 8" deep. Took about 8 hours to get them out of there, all the comb removed, etc. over two days(brought them home May 28th). They are the most active colony I have now - already brimming with activity first thing this morning. They were getting ready to swarm - several capped queen cells present - so I took a couple of cuts of brood and queen cups and placed them into a box with some bees and located them at the opposite end of our bee yard (May 27th) the day before I brought the main colony home. They seem to be doing well also - foraging activity has commenced, and they don't appear to be migrating to the main colony that was removed...we wait and see if/when queens emerge.
May 22, 2011
Checked on the united cutout hives(#1) The queeen is present and laying...although not terribly quickly...about one frame of capped brood but did see some eggs and larva. Hopefully the weather turns and she gets moving...also hopefully those queens are getting mated down in Columbus. I got one with my name on it.
May 8, 2011
United the second cutout colony with the first cutout colony(Hive #1) (End of April cutouts) as there were lots of bees, but I either damaged or didn't get the queen on the second cutout.
April 21, 2011
Two Cutouts later, and we have some more bees. The two cutouts were diametrically opposed...the first one was a a small colony with a nice but small cluster of bees on a nice sunny day...the second was over 4 hours on a ladder, on a rainy, windy, cold day, with a good amount of bees at home, but we cleared out the buildings and bought home the girls.