Harvest Time

We returned to the Apiary Wednesday night to finally take away the full supers of honey.  Simon knew he had at least 4 or 5 full, and we knew we had the one on top of the first FreeBees hive that has been full for a while.

So, like last time, we put a pillowcase on a queen excluder, sprayed in with almond oil, and put that on top of the super we wanted, with the lid back on top, and left it a while.  The bees hate the smell, and move down through the hive, and after a couple of minutes, we can take the super away with very few bees still in it.  This was then carried over to the boot of Simon’s car.

In the end we did this six times.  Ours is the one bottom left.

I’m pretty sure it was the heaviest, too.  In amongst all this waiting and carrying, we also inspected both our hives.

The newer one was doing very well.  We took out a frame from the brood box and replaced it with the end board I finally got around to making for it.  It had very little building going on on it anyway.  There was plenty of laying going on in the other frames though, and in the super, they’d started building out nicely.

The first hive was less happy though.  Although we saw the new queen 2 weeks ago, there was no sign of any new laying, and no brood left.  It was all open cells and stores.  We didn’t see the queen, but if she’s new and just mated, then maybe she’s not laying yet.  We’ll leave her another week and see.

We then got to put in the new anti-Verroa treatment I got from Modern Beekeeping.  I cut the trays to fit the entrance of the hives, filled them with the powder and slid them in.  The bees walk in this and carry it into the frames, where it kills the mites.  It’s supposed to be otherwise harmless, but I didn’t want to use it before we took the honey away.  I then put the entrance restrictors on, to help protect them from wasps.  Geoff had warned everyone earlier that wasp attacks are on the increase, and there was some odd shaping to the comb of one of the end frames in the 2nd hive that could suggest wasp attack.  They tend to eat right through from one side of the frame to the other, after the honey.  Hopefully this will protect them – it makes the entrance slot too low for wasps to get in.

Friday evening we’ll do the honey extraction, so we should have some buckets full by the end of the day.

Finally, I’ve found another – better – bee blog:  http://communities.canada.com/vancouversun/blogs/honeybee-zen/default.aspx


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