May Photo Journal

May was an adventure! Another beekeeper and I visited my friend Joe’s apiary to learn about grafting queens. My observation hive is doing well and blowing up like crazy! All of the swarms I collected this year are doing really well. So far the nectar flow is still going strong but I am seeing it slow down. There has been a decent amount of rain but I think it’s slowing down.

I did a couple removals this month and that was fun. It’s getting hot but it isn’t horrible yet. I am seeing a lot of bearding on my hives and I am noticing it is, of course, related to heat but I think it’s the humidity that pulls them all out of the hive. They stay outside of the hive just about all night and of course the colony is at its fullest when all the foragers return. Rusty Barlow says “…a moist hive can be a death sentence because evaporation is a cooling process that steals the heat from a bee’s body. Living in a damp hive is like standing in a cold room while dripping wet from a shower.” That doesn’t sound fun.

I got to use my new bee vacuum for the first time and it’s really awesome! It’s portable and light and I’ve used it for more than removals. I helped a friend move some bees out of a hive with it and I vacuumed some bees out of the street! Just remember to keep the battery charged up and you’re good to go!