My Honeybees

Backyard Beekeeping


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Fall Beehives

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Last weekend I check the beehives and winterized the hives by installing insulation. The bees have been active this past week, with temperatures in the 60’s during the day but dropping to 36 at night.  I have seen them out collecting pollen even today on the few flowers that are left.

 

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Fall Hive Inspection – Lots of flowers are still in bloom

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I checked on one of the hives today and they have lots of honey stores for the winter. The honeybees were quite active today. They were out collecting pollen and nectar on the flowers that are still in bloom. It is a beautiful and sunny day here. Although it has been getting below freezing at night. I will have to winterize the hives soon.


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Hive checks 11/17/12

On November 17, I checked both of my beehives. I removed the apistan strips from both of the hives.

My first hive showed signs of a greatly reduced cluster the bees. They gathered in the second brood box and were on the right-hand side of the box clinging on about three frames. It was very little honey Left in the brood boxes. I noticed that Yellow-jackets were flying around the Hive. I suspect that the yellow jackets have robbed the beehive. The entrance reducer was put back on the hive and two honey supers, to help them get through the winter.

The second hive, over at my in-laws, was in better shape. Both of brood boxes were still filled with honey and bees were out gathering more nectar and pollen even as I was removing the apistan strips from the hive. I put one more super of honey back on that hive.


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10/11/12 Hive Check – Varroa Mite Treatment

Low temperature scanning electron micrograph (...

Low temperature scanning electron micrograph (LTSEM) of Varroa destructor on a honey bee host (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Three weeks ago, I noticed that some of my bees had deformed wings. A random selection of three of the dying bees were collected in from the yard.  All three of the bees had deformed wings and one had a varroa mite on it’s back.  A hive inspection revealed that varroa mites were in the hives.  The bees were first treated with a dusting of powered sugar in hopes that they would remove the mites as they licked the sugar off one another.   I’ve watched the hives closely and haven’t seen any improvement.  Today, I installed apistan strips in the bottom brood boxes of both of my hives and removed the supers.  At this time both of the hives had lots of honey stores in the brood boxes.  The supers that were removed had lots of nectar and some capped honey.  In six to eight weeks, the apistan strips have to be removed and the supers put back on the hives.