Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Slot for looking in the hives?  (Read 1772 times)


  • Joined Jun 2013
  • South Wales .Carmarthenshire. SA18
Slot for looking in the hives?
« on: February 21, 2017, 09:22:28 pm »
The next day or so might give you a 10 oC and above slot of calm weather to look in your hives ...
Done to see how the bees are doing with respect to the amount of stores they have & brood . Brod wise you should have three or more frames capped both sides & some open brood as well capped frame.

 There should be plenty of pollen / bee bread as I've got 50 mm tall flowering  daisies on the lawns & two brassicas that have stayed in flower all winter.  I've also got pansies , primula & snowdrops in bloom plus several shrubs over the rear fenced off area .

 If you need to feed the bees do not use ready made commercial fondant as it often contains fungicides & preservative that can wipe out your hive (s).

 A simple 1 pint of water to 1 pound of sugar syrup boiled & left to cool to room temp then feed to the bees in an inverted feeder is about the best feed you can give.  Using an inverted feeder helps keep wasps out as well .

 Then check every 14 or so day to see that they still have enough stores .
 I used to get sick of keepers bleating that their bees had died .  On looking the bees were often head down in the comb trying to get the last vestiges of honey out the cells ..
They'd been starved to death earlyin winter if it was very mouldy & full of wax moths or early in the spring if there wasn't much evidence of moths & mould .

When with a bit of commonsense & reading of books they could have easily survived  saved & made to prosper .

 This not providing enough stores at the right times for over wintering or early spring & again in bad weather ,  is I would say,  as bigger hive killer as varrroa & nosema put together  .

Do not under any circumstances use scrap honey or honey off your own hives unless you can fully & properly sterilize it .    For scrap honey & unpasteurized honey can carry disease into your hives in a concentrated manner . 
It's quite different from leaving the same filled supers on the same hives over winter for the bees to consume . 

30 or so years ago my mentor " Alvin "  ( couple of tonnes of honey each year  & 19 yrs experience )  often said to me :-
" For  beginners , remember,  it's much better to look at the hives to see differences between several hives than it is to spot an individual disease in a single hive " .

 He also ( thankfully ) encouraged me to make my own hives & Neuc boxes so I could grow my own bees to get really strong stock & have enough bees to easily survive any disasters .

  For middle England swarming season often starts  11 to 24 April . With the suggestions of global warming in mind it may be starting to occur earlier in your area ... be vigilant .

The further north the later the date ( Usually ) , conversely the further south the earlier the date it starts .  So be prepared to look for queen cells & make up nucs starting about first of April . 
Now is the time to get your nucs sorted will be too late by the first of April ( Guess how I know  :bow:  :-[ )
Strong belief , triggers the mind to find the way ... Dyslexia just makes it that bit more amusing & interesting


  • Joined Jun 2013
  • South Wales .Carmarthenshire. SA18
Re: Slot for looking in the hives?
« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2017, 01:21:08 am »
 :innocent:  OK.......... so the weather changed !  :gloomy:
Strong belief , triggers the mind to find the way ... Dyslexia just makes it that bit more amusing & interesting


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