Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Feed Check and Bring the Boots

The first thing I forgot to bring were my boots.

But I did think to change my footwear before heading out of the house, but in the shuffle I forgot.

The weather warmed up to between 2 to 10+ degrees and the last of the snow melted, adding more water to the mostly frozen ground.

As I write this it has snowed once again, typical for a Canadian spring. Everything is covered in a blanket of white. Oh well. It too shall melt one day.

It was about -3 and so I moved quickly so again, no photos showing the inside of the hive. But here's the report:

For all four hives, the bees had finished their sugar baggies--this probably in the three or four warmer days. There were many of them clustered over the pollen patties, happily eating them.

I gave them all fresh baggies and more patties, putting them into every space on the frames. I knew the weather would be colder again so I wanted to take advantage of this day to top them up. Then if the weather warmed again or the cluster moved over they could take advantage of the feed.

I picked up a few stray bees that fell and warmed them with my hands. Their tongues were quick to lick my skin because it was covered with sticky syrup. They are hungry!

The mud was bad and was sucking my running shoes right off my feet as I tried to work. I got so frustrated I put a piece of plastic/cardboard down to stand on. Note to self: Put some sand around the hives to fill in the low spots where water collects.

I thank God the bees are alive, despite the mistakes I had made. I consider myself fortunate and don't credit it to any great beekeeping skill on my part. I have learned though and will apply all the knowledge I've gained as I work with the bees.

Now let's just hope the snow will melt and we'll have a warm spring.

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