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Sunday, January 22, 2006

Excelent Brood Patern...wait, who are you?

I did an inspection of the Italian hive today and I think it was one of my better ones. I got everthing assembled and put together, suited up and hoped that the bees wouldn't sting too much. The Italian hive at my house had become increasingly aggressive throught the fall and, needless to say, I was concerned for my own sake. Today I would do a full inspection, not a touch up of the supers, I mean all the way into the core of the brood nest...where bees are most defensive. Here's how the journey went. The bees haven't even begun to draw out the top super and however, the one below it was probably 70% filled with capped honey. I smoked them and they roared...a few hundred had taken flight and were hoveing around me. It was probably the most bees I've ever seen flying in one area! Granted, the roar was loud...louder than an airconditioner. I removed the super just above the brood box and nearly dropped it given its weight. It is 100% full of capped honey. I finaly got down to the brood nest for the first time in almost 2 months. While this may seem neglegent keep in mind that I was being repelled by stinging behavior, and to this point I didn't have even one sting in my gloves. I picked through the frames and found that every one of them had brood in them. The four or five frames that make up the center were completely full and branching out from that frames were 2/3 full of brood and the two end frames were about 1/4 full. In the center of the brood nest I actually found the queen but, I found out why it's been so hard to locate her. This queen is not the one I installed with the package, she had no white dot on her thorax. Either way, I'm keeping her, she's fueling an army of bees to make gallons of honey! I got one sting in my right glove when I picked up a super and accidentally squished a bee. It was the only sting I got in the entire inspection. Not bad for such a large colony. One thing I do have to bring up is when I got back into the house my father said, "Did you see how many bees were in the air around the hive?! There was a cloud of bees!" Just to put this into perspective, it looked like what would be equall to the entire Russian hive taking to the skys. Anyways, the hive is loaded with bees, brood, pollen and honey. Drone numbers, however, seem awfully low. I think the honeyflow may be in a lull of production. I could easily, however, pull off one super full of honey almost any time. I'm just waiting for that other super to be filled. G4st...your birthday present should be ready in time!


Blogger G4st said...

My jasmine pearls tea, and haagen-dazs vanilla ice cream will never be the same.

8:55 AM, January 23, 2006  
Blogger The Beekeeper said...

I'm not sure how well honey and vinella ice-cream go together...

2:59 PM, January 23, 2006  
Blogger G4st said...

I assure you, it is a match made in heaven.

8:04 AM, January 24, 2006  
Blogger Susi said...

Honey goes with anything! How are the other beekeepers in the area doing? Do they see a lull in nectar flow? We're still in the depths of winter here in VA, though it's been fairly mild lately. 60 today

3:49 PM, January 29, 2006  

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