Sunday, May 22, 2016

Summer is a Go...Probably

Last week, we were back down to freezing temperatures, which was a little scary knowing about all the new bees waiting to hatch. This week, in typical Minnesota fashion, temperatures are back up and the bees have been busy. 

Below, you can see a new bee hatching, or emerging. Can you see her antennae and front eyes sticking out?

Both hives are looking healthy and I'm guessing we'll add another super to each by next weekend. They have also been working hard to clean up some of the comb from last year that we put in the hive to try and give them a head start.  They're doing a wonderful job.

 We are enjoying the progress of the bees, and also the progress of spring and the hope of summer.  Little Miss Bee is just over a week away from finishing Kindergarten.  We're starting to eat watermelon and playing outside as much as we can.

We hope you are enjoying this season, too!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

First Inspections

Our bees are busy...

In the photo below, on the right side, you can see a bee entering into the hive with some nice, light yellow pollen on her leg.  Hooray! The trees have already passed the budding stage here, dandelions are in bloom (to my delight but the dismay of many), and more wildflowers are on the way.  In case you're choosing flowers for your garden, honeybees like blue and purple blooms the best. 

It looks like both queens are busy laying eggs and, any day now, new honeybees will start emerging from their cells and will get to work.  Since a good queen could lay 1000 eggs each day, we would hope that about that many bees would be added every day once the hatching rotation is in full swing. A honeybee's first job is to clean out her cell.

Below is a photo of a brood frame from one hive.  You can see what we'd call a very nice pattern of brood.  That means that there aren't many empty cells, which would be ones  you can see here that are uncapped.  This queen is doing a very nice job! ...and there will be many new bees soon.

We have had hints of warmer weather here in central MN, and the people here generally revel in any slightly warmer temperature.  We took some time to blow bubbles outside at Mr. T's while Mr. Bee finished the inspection.  You can see that the background of life in MN is turning green with spring again.

I'd also like to send a late birthday note to our beekeeping mentor and friend, Mr. Martin.  We send our love and happiest wishes for the year ahead!