Although I know it’s a fluke this early, but there is a nip of coolness in the air. What a welcome relief from the blistering heat we’ve had recently. I decided that it was a perfect day to look in on the girls. Today we’re beginning our fall preparations. Some of the hives look great, and some not so much so. My goal is to get them beefed up enough to get through the winter to next spring. I’ll be saving several frames of honey from this year to feed them if I need to early next spring.
The last time I checked on this one, I thought it was a goner. No queen, and tons of drones. Multiple eggs sloppily laid – all pointed to a laying worker. To my astonishment, I opened the box this morning to find the number of workers increasing and a working queen laying out a pretty solid egg pattern. How that happened, I have no idea. None. I’m grateful, but perplexed. Added 1/2 a megabee patty and 1/2 gallon of syrup.
Still a dead out.
Brood in various stages, but didn’t see queen. Added 1/2 patty megabee and 1/2 gallon of syrup. I’d like to see this one put more stores on.
Pretty good and perfectly staged for the fall honey flow. The top deep is full end to end with perfectly drawn, empty comb. Same regiment as the others with megabee and syrup. Saw some eggs in the top super, but nothing significant. Most of the action seems to be down below.
One of the strongest hives. I saw several bees still working honey in the honey super I left on from the spring. Didn’t see a need to add any supplements at this time.
Pretty much the same as last time. 3 strong frames of bees. I split the brood nest with a frame of freshly drawn comb from Brooks 4 in hopes that the queen would expand her laying. Same addition of megabee and syrup.
Looks really good. Chuck full of bees and honey. Didn’t add any syrup, but they did get 1/2 a megabee patty.
Brooks 7 and 8
These are doing okay, but are going to need to beef up before winter. Each had 4-5 frames of bees and mediocre stores. Added syrup and megabee. These two may get combined – possibly with the Nuc thrown in too. Wintering Nucs can be challenging.
We’ve managed the mite levels pretty well this year, but I’m going to try using one of the essential oil based varroa treatments this fall to knock the mites down more than just using a powdered sugar program. Probably looking at apilife var.