Bee Diary - 2018-05-30 - Venturing into the hive

Well…​ I’ve had better days. It has been three days since I had started my new colony and I was quite excited to see what was going on inside the confines of the box. Going out there I knew in my head what I wanted to look for: eggs, wax, and food. Going out there I also knew what I wanted to get accomplished: get the queen box out. What I wasn’t expecting was having to acknowledge the errors I had made in the days previous.

The first problem was that I didn’t completely clear the lid when I removed the shim on Monday. This ended up trapping many bees which later died. That was a complete shock to my system which, along with digging my hands into many, many stinging insects, clouded my thoughts for the rest of the operation.

The next thing I found that was worrisome was the hundreds of ants that had made their way under the lid of the hive and onto the sugar syrup can. I had noted the ant-highway going up the side of the hive yesterday and sort of expected to find what I did. I’m hoping that removing the syrup can will help alleviate the problem.

Inside the hive

Inside the hiveOnce I got over the shock and dismay of opening the lid, I ventured into the heart of the hive…​ the brood box. Of course by now the excitement of getting to see what’s going on inside is competing directly with the nervousness of opening a box of thousands of bees. (I should note that I’m using smoke to quell any attacks from the ladies which seems to be working.) Popping off the lid, I’m greeted with many eyes wondering what I’m doing. Luckily they all seem to not really care all that much and I’m able to go about my business of removing the queen box and rubber band to one of the center frames. It’s a little difficult and I have to step away from the hive, once, to give my nerves a moment to calm themselves. Once I’ve removed the box from the frame I quickly take a look and notice that the bees have been hard at work depositing lots of wax into perfect little hexagons. Unfortunately, I forget to look for eggs to make sure the queen is doing her job so that will be for next time.

To Do

  1. Inspect brood box to make sure:

    • eggs are visible

    • everyone is happy

  2. Tilt the hive forward instead of back.