Monday, July 25, 2011

Our hive at Prairieland Herbs is acting very strangely. First... It swarmed, a few weeks ago. The queen took off with half the workers and a load of honey, despite being in an excellent location with plenty of room in the hive.

Then a few days ago we discovered that the hive -which successfully requeened itself after the first queen left -was making new queen cells. LOTS of them.

So yesterday was all about bees.

We assembled several new hives and lots of new wooden frames (we are thinking maybe the black plastic frames in the original hive are displeasing the Queen), and set up two new hive locations (shown here).

We removed as many of the black plastic frames as possible from the original hive.

And replaced them with wooden ones.

Next I removed the frames with queen cells, and placed them each in a new empty hive, with a frame of honey. There were about 8 queen cells on each frame. I was very careful not to remove the existing queen!

Then, I drove across the road to Picket Fence Creamery.

The hive we have over there is doing really well!

The girls were really interested in the goings-on.

REALLY interested!!

I took two frames with baby bees from
This hive....

And put them in the other two new hives with queens/honey. This is a sort of risky thing which may or may not work, but it's all an experiment (Zan, I hope I did it all right!!)

Now we will feed all these new hives and keep checking them for signs that the queens are all doing their jobs. I guess that's all we can do!


Allison at Novice Life said...

Ha! That picture with the cows in your car is too funny!

Becky said...

I've got all my fingers and toes crossed for your bees. My box of wooden frames just arrived. I'm going to wait until later this afternoon to replace those crappy plastic frames, as it's already hot as heck out there. :)

fullfreezer said...

Where did you come up with extra boxes so quickly? We are planning to get bees next spring but I'm seeing lots of people out there in blogland talking about capturing swarms and they all seem to be able to just magically put them into an empty hive.

girlwithasword said...

Judy, it's not magic, just planning ahead. We got a good deal on a bunch of hives so we bought them, because we know we plan to increase our number of hives. it's just a good idea to have extra equipment on hand in case you need to split a hive or catch a swarm. We will be spending some time this winter making more new hives too.