Monday, August 20, 2007

hive update

My last check was on wed 8/15...
I added another box to the good hive, bringing it to 6 boxes high. I officially need a ladder now to tend to this hive as the hive stand is about 12 inches off the ground and there is no way I will be able to maneuver a heavy box that is head height. I didnt go too deep in the good hive for fear of disturbing a good thing.

The second hive, I was more interested in how my experiment went- whether the bees used the eggs I moved there to create a queen. I saw no evidence of such. In fact, I saw more evidence of that silly laying worker bee- multipe eggs in cells. Oh well. I guess this hive will doom themselves.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Experiment in process

well, an experiment within the existing 'beekeeping' experiment for me...

On saturday I went over to check the hives again, The "good"hive was still doing great, I only checked the top three boxes, the first two were mostly full of honey (and were heavy!). In the third box down I saw some eggs and no queeen on a frame, so I thought I'd do what my mentor said and move a frame of them over to the problem hive. This would give the problem hive the opportunity to create a new queen which would save the hive.
This switcharoo entailed me having the good hive broken open and then turning around and opening the second hive at the same time to steal an empty frame to replace the frame of eggs in the good hive. I was sucessful, so I will see what the problem hive does with this little boost of eggs.
When I inspected the problem hive further it appeared that the laying worker was at it again as the brood was only drone brood. This probably doesn't fare well for my experiment as it is likely the existing bees think this laying worker is in fact queen bee and will protect her and not recognize the need to create a new queen. But, I am guessing at all this. I will need Tim's insight to understand the "as the world turns" of these bees that have gone awry.

I finished painting the hive equipment (4 more boxes) and am in the process of prepping the frames and is very time consuming so it becomes my evening activities.