Monday, 5 July 2010

Bee Season

Nature really is amazing. When our eldest son was here in mid-June I had a look at the hives and although all was well and as it should be the supers were mediocre. Filling but slowly. I had another look exactly seven days ago and the situation was just the same.

What a difference a week makes! We opened the hives yesterday and to my astonishment the supers were filling to the extent that all but one hive needed another super. Hmmm, shortage of supers then! I can't judge how the harvest will be in comparison to last year but at least there will be a harvest.

A few years ago I exchanged a stack of sailing charts for some 12 frame Dadants and other equipment. This meant that we were able to expand our apiary and they have served us well. However, Dadants come in two sizes, 12-frame and 10-frame and we had a mix. This isn't great as I seem to spend a lot of time needing the other size super regardless of what I've put on the trailer. So last week I bought two new 10-frame Dadants and have put two of the bigger ones up for sale, together with one of the nucs we created this year. This is the nuc when we opened it up yesterday:

It was very hot yesterday and one of the hives was busy taking a breathe of fresh air:

There is something unbelievably fascinating about bees. I know there's a stack of publicity about honey bees at the moment and that's wonderful because it means more people are becoming interested and more are becoming beekeepers. That's got to be a good thing and perhaps one day it will be quite normal again to have a hive at the bottom of the garden (or on the roof).

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