Lots To Do And Very Little Time
Ok! Lots to go over today but I’m going to try to keep it quick. All of my hives are doing great! The two nucs are both very strong and have 3 solid frames of capped brood in each of them. The stronger of the two colonies had more cappaed honey but that’s the only difference between them at this point. The hive that had laying workers (White Hive) seems to have corrected itself, so I decided to add the stronger of the two nucs and give them a queen. I put the honey super on the bottom, an empty deep box over the full one, with newspaper inbetween, and put the nuc frames in that. With any luck the bees will do what they need to and I can move frames around so they have two solid boxes!
I moved the second nuc slightly to the left, so any returning field bees from the strong nuc would go into into it. I’m planning on using this nuc to give the trap out bees a proper queen. They have a few queen cells on the frame I’ve given them but there won’t be time to raise a strong new queen before winter, and combining will give both colonies a strong boost of field and nurse bees.
I left Green Hive alone since I treated them with MAQS a few days ago.
After everything was done at home I ran over to the colony in the tree to make sure I had finally managed to seal them off properly they had found an entrance on the opposite side of the tree some 10 feet off the ground. I shoved the hole full of duct tape and that seems to have kept them out. They were bringing in loads of pollen, which is interesting because none of the workers in the hive box I set out seem to be bringing any back… Obviously I don’t have time to properly complete this trap out but I will get a whole deeps worth of bees so that’s still helpful. I wish there was time to let them rob the tree because I know there’s a ton of honey in there, but I don’t think there will be. I’ll give it a couple more days and then go and bring the hive home.
All in all I would say this has been my most adventurous beekeeping year to date. I’d never made nucs at home before but I found them incredibly helpful and will do so again next year. I hope that with at least two strong colonies going into winter I will have some bees in the spring. The fact that I only treated them once this year does worry me, but I’m hoping the greatly reduced brood levels in all of the colonies will have kept more levels low as well.