Week commencing June 24th 2019
As the rain dried up and the sun re appeared, we were making preparations for the lime tree & bramble nectar flow. Also aware that the sunshine may encourage more swarming, we ensured that bait hives were ready and current colonies have enough space for honey storage. Adding more ‘supers’ ( the smaller boxes with frames for honey storage) when necessary.
Bait Hives. (6 in use)
WBC sized: Badgers Run, Gore orchard: ‘Sarah’, Golden Sized: Cuppa & Bakery all still empty.
Druid Tree bees
Druid Tree: Very busy bringing in pollen. As the tree itself is on high ground and secluded, we were able to hang the bait hive at a more accessible height so that viewing is easier. The bees have an abundance of brambles and it is this location where we collected a small amount of pure bramble honey last year.
Druid Tree bees
We added an empty flow hive above the Farm shop overlooking the gardens.
Sylvia: bringing in plenty of pollen but not yet moved into top empty super.
Grace: Large colourful collection of pollen being collected and very busy
Alison: Bright orange and yellow pollens being brought into this colony, clear signs that the new queen is well
Winifred: Settling into the upper super but no comb yet is drawn there. Lots of pollen going in.
and Joy: Still a comparatively small colony but bringing in pollen and growing slowly, grateful of the feed
Freda: Always busy and happy to see visitors, coming out to welcome us!
Druid: Very busy with plenty of pollen going in.
Freedom Hive ‘Deana’: We were concerned that this colony didn’t survive the wet weather but they have been seen using both entrances so thankfully all is well.
Caterpillar walk; ‘Amber’: a very strong and busy colony which may need to be moved into a larger hive before the Autumn.
Marl Pit Skep hive, Holly: We use binoculars to view this colony on the island, hot sunny days they can be clearly seen as sparkles of light flying in and around their skep.
Emily: Bringing in plenty of pollen. Their location makes them well placed for the clover in the orchard and the Lime trees in the avenue. The supers are still empty, but we expect them to fill over the coming months. Clover yields nectar when temperatures exceed 20 degrees.
Flowhive swarm: Petra. Settling into their new home. We attached the adjustable legs to the hive. No signs of varroa.
Cuppa: We raised this hive onto the breeze blocks to aid ventilation. Very busy with pollen collection. Compass Very busy bringing in pollen. Poppy pollen is currently abundant
Warre swarm slowly expanding
Warre hive: The cluster inside is gradually widening so we are certain they are comb building inside. Pollen was also being brought in which suggests they are queenright.
Lime Tree blossom ready for sunshine
Oak: Not seen flying, but heavy foliage makes viewing difficult.
Lime: No flying seen. Lime tree not yet in full blossom.
Ash: No flying seen
Zeidler hive: No bees investigating this hive yet.
Bee count, 4 WBC, 2 Warre, 2 Freedom, 2 Flowhive plus 3 Golden (Cuppa, Compass, Druid oak)1 skep (Holly,) & 1 wild (Oak). Bait hives 2(confirmed) Total 17