We made another trip to the hive tonight. The wind was not nearly like last night and we could see bees flying as soon as we got there. They seemed to be coming in and out of the hive without problem. We noticed this time several dead bees on the ground in front of the entrance. Bees remove their dead from the hive and apparently our hive at least just deposits them right outside the door. Dieing is natural so we are not concerned with seeing these. It's actually probably a good sign that they are taking care of their home and removing them.
You can also see in this first photo the size of the opening we had in place. As I mentioned in the last post we have that entrance reducer to help preserve heat and keep the bees inside getting used to their new home. Today, we removed it. You can see the larger opening now to the right and the entrance reducer sitting on top of the box. It will probably not be needed again until it starts getting cold in the fall.
Now that the full entrance is open we have to worry about critters like mice getting inside. Usually people will put a mouse guard in place to keep them out. For us this is a piece of wire cut to size and stapled in place. If you look closely at the staple gun you might be saying, "isn't it being held upside down?". Yes, in fact it was and the first staple ended up in the wrong place. That was easy enough to fix though.
We also gave the bees a little more food tonight since we were there. We didn't make a new batch of sugar water, this was just left over from when we first installed them two nights ago. I was amazed at how much they had gone through already. When this picture was taken many of the bees had gotten out and started flying around. When we first lifted the lid there were many more hanging out on top.
The last piece of maintenance we did was to turn over the top board when we placed it back. You can't see on this picture but on two sides there are small cut outs which we had turned up. Like with the entrance reducer the rational was keeping the heat in the hive. With things warming up the notches are now facing down to provide a little bit of air circulation.
So that's it for now. Two days down and I think the bees look great. At this point we are probably not going to check up on them again until the weekend. We'll add more sugar water at that point and possibly pull up a few frames to see how they are doing at creating comb on them. Once they have gotten a good amount created we'll pull their sugar water food source so that the honey produced it actually from "nature".
Package Installation – one week in
1 week ago