Here is a link to a fascinating article I read about bees and how they can reverse aging of their minds.
I checked in on the hive where I install the new queen. She is doing fabulous, lots of brood and honey. The super is full of capped honey. I’m sure glad I cleaned up those old hives. I added a third deep to this hive today. The supers required a size of foundation that I didn’t have on hand so I hope the bees like the deep.
It was a huge relief to see that the new queen is settling in to the hive and the bees are so productive. I was worried that the hive was not going to make it but it seems to be recovering from the set back.
While the bees are busy making honey, I’ve been working on cleaning up old hives. A while back I was given some old beehives. They were in disrepair, needing to be painted and cleaned up. Finally some of them are complete. Here are the before and after photos.
These old hives had been out in a backyard heap for the past 15 years. They contained old honeycomb, spiders and mold. The old comb was removed from the frames. The boxes and frames have been power washed, sanded and then lightly torched. The outside of the boxes were painted. All that is left now is inserting the new plasticel into the old frames. Hopefully the bees will soon need to expand into some new deeps and supers.
I check on the older hive where the swarm cells were found from on Sunday. There were more cup cells with larva in them that I must have missed. These were just cup cells with small larva in them, not capped. I scraped six small cups off the edge of frames in the supers.
The bees are storing lots of honey now. I hope the remaining capped brood in the supers will emerge soon so the bees can finish storing honey in the supers.
It was 100 degrees during the day, so I waited until 8 pm to work the hive.
This morning I was out gardening when all of a sudden there was a mass of honeybees in the air above me. It was a cloud of buzzing bees over the garden. It seemed like all of the bees had left the hive. There was a pile of bearding bees at the entrance of hive. After about 5 minutes the cloud dispersed. Many of the bees went back to the hive.
I checked on the hive a few hours later and removed over fifteen capped queen cells. The cells were filled with white larva that squirted out when I scraped them off the frame. It was unpleasant for me to destroy the cells but I couldn’t risk them swarming.
While checking the hive I removed drone cells and removed several capped drones. There were no mites on the drones I inspected.