Sunday, May 18, 2008

My first Hive Examination

Saturday, May 17, 2008.

The bees have been working in their hive for 4 days and I just HAD to see what they were up to. I needed to see if the queen was alive and well and just what was going on inside that hive. So I donned the gear, lit the smoker and opened the hive. CJ took photos of my first foray into beekeeping, so I'll add them here and comment on them as I go.

Lighting the smoker

Examining a frame.

The bees are drawing out the comb and there's a QUEEN there!!! She's very beautiful. Can you find her?

I will let them work for another week and hopefully will have some brood in there. I think I saw some eggs, but it's way too early for brood and I don't really have experience identifying them at this early stage. I saw several bees carrying pollen on their back legs, saw several cells with pollen in them, several more with clear liquid (water? nectar?) and hopefully a few eggs, but it's too early for me to discern a pattern in the queen's laying (or if she's laying at all.) She definitely hasn't got any attending bees that I had hoped to see surrounding her, but they are a small colony and I don't expect them to be too established after only four days.

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