Sunday, October 18, 2009

This Pleasant Dull Moment

It was a bright and sunny day. A perfectly wonderfully boring day. And greatly appreciated too.

No excitement, just an ordinary trip on an ordinary day to do a round of medication in the hives.

Sadly there were some dead bees on the front porch. Most of them were drones but there were workers too. I even saw two workers with pollen on their legs dying on the front porch.


On closer examination their wings appeared to be functioning, although they couldn't fly. I noticed that of their six legs, none of the nearly dead or dying workers had working use of their front legs. I don't suspect this is pesticide poisoning. I do suspect that the Formic Acid or AFB medication could be in play here. The temperate was only 8 so the coolness of the day may have played a factor as well.

On the upside, there was fairly steady traffic coming and going from both hives, a little more from Hive #2 than Hive #1. And they were bringing back pollen! Where on earth they are finding it is a mystery but I'm happy to report that in this new location I've seen more pollen coming back in this cold fall weather than I ever saw come back in the swamp. I think that's a positive sign we're in a good spot.

Mite counts were 80 for Hive #2 and 60 for Hive #1 so the Formic Acid is still working away. I can't imagine either hive would be alive in spring if left untreated.

The sugar water was down a bit so they did take some.

I'm looking forward to next weekend. That's when the rim spacer comes out along with the Formic Acid pad. Shortly after that I'll be able to put the entrance reducer back in which will make the hive much warmer. Then I'll be finding out when to put the "bee cosies" on the hive for winter protection.

A nice thing happened in that I got a chance to do a little bee education with a couple families that were there to pick pears. I let the kids try on the bee hat and veil and they posed for pictures. Just about everybody has a camera with them these days. It was a nice impromptu opportunity.

Everything else that day was pretty darned normal. Gee... sigh..... whew!
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