Thursday, April 5, 2012

Space, that Interior Frontere

Give them a little and they'll take full advantage.

And they did!

At the bee meeting last week the consensus from the group was that the bees had all eaten very little honey during the winter.

The Canadian winter that wasn't.  With exceptionally warm weather we had no snow.

Beekeepers reported their hives are full of bees, this spring and bursting with uneaten honey.

Add in a week of exceptionally warm weather.  Many of us opened our hives to check on the bees.

That's when I discovered that they were honey bound.  Yes, honey bound in spring.

This is where I messed up.  I had a super on hand but only six sticky frames from last year.  I gave this strong hive that box to tide them over.  I was thinking they'd spend their time licking the frames off and repairing the combs.

I planned to return in a few days with more frames to fill the box.

I returned only five days later but that was enough.  The bees had built to large pancake-like combs hanging in that extra space.  The queen had even laid eggs in every cell.

Another lesson to remember.  Bees can build combs very quickly when the weather is warm.

Bear in mind I gave them the super to build combs to give them something to do with their excess energy.  I still need to treat the hives so I don't want honey supers on at this stage.  So I'll keep them busy building combs.

That should give them an excuse to eat some of their honey.

With this quick start in spring it could mean early swarms but then our weather has turned cold again so it's a guessing game.

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