2016…entering my 4th season of beekeeping and have yet to experience what it feels like to be stung. I have been stung but it was so long ago, before I started beekeeping, that I really can’t remember the pain or gain (good against arthritis). It’s mid March of the new year and I can’t believe how much freshly collected nectar I saw today. Despite the rain and some cold weather, the bees have been busy and are out and about today.
Check out our little hustlers:
Alright, so let’s get down to work. One thing we wanted to do today was clean out the bottom board which after the winter season was laced with wet dirt. Knowing that bees like to run a highly hygienic household, this degree of debris is in need of a spring cleaning.
Lucky for them, the entire bottom board got replaced with a previously torched one. Nothing like changing into dry clothes, right?! Also notice the new placement of the hive. We would like to relocate this one back to the front yard for the summer but can only do so in one meter daily increments. Otherwise, bees won’t find their way back to their home.
As we make our way down to the bottom board, we also replaced layers of insulation (pieces of wool carpets) with dry ones. We’ve used newspaper before but they tend to chew that up, possibly because they don’t like the smell of it.
Overall, we were impressed. So far we know that two productive and strong colonies have made it through the winter. We saw pollen, brood, nectar, the green queen and excess cell formations. Check out their extra work:
With a little welcome back present, I think the 2016 spring crew is off to a great start.
And on such a warm day, I look forward to another harvest! Stay tuned for more to come soon! I have some updating to do from 2015 still! You won’t want to miss it 😉
Enjoy magnolia season!