Take the ones which are full. No reason not to do so.
id put the suit on and pull out the two or 3 frames which look fully sealed, if they are id then take honey from those only. Btw the frames would be back in the FH prior to extraction.
if this is yr 2nd or 3rd year extracting honey the bees draw the comb out a bit more and u might get 2.5kg plus from each frame
Strange occurance today… Two queens in the hive!!!
Old queen has been progressively failing. We went in today to dispatch her and put in some new brood. Seems the girls were way ahead of us.
Question? How come the old queen didn’t kill the new one?
If the bees want to supersede a queen, they usually succeed. Presumably they have a way of preventing the old queen from attacking the new one. I believe that virgin queens don’t have very strong pheromones either, so that reduces the attack risk.
Just because it has been a bit quiet in here I thought I’d share this resin honeycomb table (not mine; you might need to click on it to see it properly, including the finished product):
I take no responsibility for anyone getting lost in the rabbit warren of Imgur posts!
It looks like it has been removed…let me see if I can find it via other means. It was a guy that makes his own tables, and the particular table from that link had a honeycomb pattern. Not exactly bee related, but bee inspired!
This isn’t the exact table but it shows what it looked like…
Source for that image: https://wood.kochut.org/en/shop/side-tables/coffee-table-honeycomb-oak-amber-epoxy-wax-natural-oil-metal-legs
So, I finally got back into my hive today for a proper inspection. And as I suspected either my last queen (she was great!) swarmed or she died. I couldn’t spot a new queen but I saw a small amount of capped brood (not much) and a few bees chewing through and emerging from cells. If/when I get bored I’ll look through the photos I took and see if I can spot her.
Full Flow Super
- Bees had prepared the full flow super but hadn’t yet started to store anything in it. Given the hive is weaker than I’d like to have 2x supers on I’ve removed the full flow super
- The 3x flow frames in the hybrid have had honey put in them. Still quite a way off any kind of harvest, I suspect, given the current hive strength/visible capped brood. The traditional frames are still fine.
- In the brood box I only had 2.5 frames with any kind of appreciable capped brood, and it was a small to medium cluster of capped brood in the centre, or just off centre, of the frame. There were another 1.5 frames with countable capped brood. I guess this is a good sign (i.e. laying queen) but the girl has her work cut out for her to be as good as my other queen. Early days yet it would seem
- The 2 outer frames on each side were pretty much all honey or honey and pollen. This is abnormal for this time of year but I’m assuming is a reflection of a new queen getting started…
- All frames were still all covered in bees, hence the reason I left the hybrid super on.
- I spotted about a dozen drones in the brood box but no drone cells on the frames. This is abnormal for this time of year but I’m assuming is a reflection of a new queen getting started…
- Colony was otherwise healthy and docile.
So, not as bad as it could have been but I had hoped for better.
Was there any evidence of old swarm or supercedure cells?
Indeed there was. If you click on the top right of my post (where it indicates I’m replying to someone… In this case myself) that will jump you back to my previous post.
Sooooooo, I checked on some of the colonys this week and now I’m feeding two of them… Roll on the marri flow!
Does the hot weather help induce flowering?
Hiya Snowy, no, quite the opposite. Eucalypts and many of our native flora are opportunistic so if conditions are good they can flower multiple times a year, if bad conditions they may not flower at all, jarrah is renowned to only flower every few years, another reason jarrah honey commands the high prices. Often the tree will bud up then, if conditions deteriorate, ie a long hot dry spell, abort the buds.
Four years ago WA had one of the worst honey seasons recorded and 2 years ago nectar was dripping from the flowers.
Marri is more regular with its flowering however the nectar content varies. I don’t like feeding and the marri flow big or small should restock the larder.
Another warm one today, 41°C. Hopefully the fire bugs stay away.
Warm… With an easterly. Feels like I’m standing in a dryer. At least it isn’t humid.
I did notice that with the trees in the bush around me last year. Plenty of buds… But negligible flowering.
I did a follow-up inspection today…no capped brood and colony size down. After doing a first pass inspection, not finding the queen, and seeing no capped brood I started to turn my mind to re-establishing the hive. However, on inspecting all the frames a second time I saw alot of cells with eggs. There’s hope for the next inspection in a week or two!
To help the colony I’ve shrunk back to a single brood box only. I’ve currently got an escape board in place to empty my hybrid super of the remaining bees and then I’ll guess I’ll be storing that up for a few weeks if all goes well, or to spring if the hive struggles through…
Good news on the eggs Alan.
If you still have a good mass of older bees should you really be squashing them down and taking their additional stores off them? This could cause crowding and the forager bees will have nothing to do, at the very least with the flow frames in place etc. they will have room to spread out and not overheat.
I don’t have all frames 80pc full of bees and half my frames have honey in the brood box (at best I’d say the brood chamber is 60pc full of bees). I’m more concerned about wax moth and the cooler nights forecast (less than 20degC), that’s the driver for me removing the super.
It’s a good point you raise, though, and I’m conscious of the possible need to put the super back on in a couple of weeks. I’ve also got 6 frames of capped honey available to cycle back in if needed at some point.
Maybe I oversimply things with my minimal disturbance approach to beekeeping but I would be surprised if wax moths became a problem at 60% bee coverage of all frames.
My other concern would be the bees thinking they are honey bound.
An overnight temperature of 14C with 28+ days I would not consider a big issue.
…I would be surprised if wax moths became a problem at 60% bee coverage of all frames…
I agree but as the number of bees and activity within the hive had visually fallen since the previous inspection 2 weeks ago, and a lack of capped brood, I anticipate the colony size to reduce further before growing (hopefully) growing again.
Either way, we’ll see how/if the colony and my hive comes through the next couple of weeks.