Hive Notes 7.4.19

July 4th, 2019 @ 6:15AM

Weather: 68 degrees- blue skies without a cloud insight, no breeze, slightly humid
orange sun peeking through the trees, birds active, hives humming gently

Morning prep: cleaned up empty hive boxes and extra tools from last inspection, started my smoker which took several tries to get ignited, pushed back the brier and made a path to the platform, left the black berries touching HIve 3 entrance - the girls seemed to enjoy them :)

Hive 1: One deep brood box facing west

A fair amount of bees inside, they look small in size compared to the other hives. 6 middle frames covered with bees with the end frames bare. Drawn comb in all frames, middle frames are 70% full with brood. Corners have capped honey with surrounding outer comb filled with wet nectar. A few areas where bee bread is present.

The girls were gentle, little buzzy but busy and didn’t seem to mind me poking around. Did no see any drones. All capped brood, pretty tight in formation. Not a lot of skipped comb btw the brood. A small hive but I put an extra brood box on top today to give them a little more room.

Hive 2: Two deep brood boxes, queen excluder, two shallow honey boxes
facing east towards thick brier patch and trees

This hive is very full with bees. They were noisy, quickly started to spread the message that I was coming in. The two shallows on top have drawn comb but little to no wet nectar and no capped honey. I found drones aimlessly wondering through the shallows without many other attendants.

The top brood box has a fair amount of wet nectar and the corners all have capped honey. More drones, lots of bees. Down into the bottom deep, no normal brood and more drones. The little brood present is all drone cells. There are many open queen cells and little cups all over the inside. There were a few supersedure or emergency queen cells in the middle of the frames in the top deep.

Hive 3: Two deep brood boxes, queen excluder, two shallow honey boxes, one medium super
facing west towards the barn

The top medium super is drawn out with comb with every frame filled with wet nectar and corner capped honey. The following two shallows also are filled with more capped honey and wet nectar. Full and heavy but each box has only a few hundred bees.

Moving down into the brood boxes, I see many drones and a combination of supersedure and swarm cells. Only brood present is more drone brood. There are not many bees in the hive in total, each brood box contains maybe 3 frames of bees.

They are noticeably longer bees with thick black stripes. Very fuzzy shoulders. Even though there weren’t many bees present, they seems gentle and did not fly into my face or buzz around me. Gentle hum with one or two drones making a lot of noise. The top brood box has no frames on the end so when I leaned over the top there was quite a draft moving up from the bottom. Nice cool air, I believe mainly from bees wings.

Emily Watson