Hive Inspection–October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween! I’m so full of sugar right now–despite my best intentions–that I’m not sure I’m going to survive.

We just had a wonderful meal of Japanese curry, sweet and sour chicken, Pao de Quejo (cheese bread), and so on. We also watched Garfield’s Halloween Adventure, a family favorite and a bit of a tradition.

Oddly enough, I got an inspection in as well. Today was unseasonably warm (almost 70), and since the snow is supposed to come in tomorrow and our first hard freeze is supposed to be Wednesday night, I figured I’d get in what looks to be the last. I also owe you, I believe, photos from my last hive inspection with my dad.

But first:

  • Warm, sunny, no wind
  • Bees were VERY calm today
  • Hive 1 is big and heavy still, which I like. They have 9 full frames of honey and very little in the way of brood.
  • Hive 2 is also big and heavy, but their honey super is showing a classic rainbow of honey and brood still. Not nearly as much brood as you’d see mid-summer, but still enough to make me want to find that queen and ask what’s up. I don’t like that queen. She’s got a good pattern, but she’s just not as productive as Hive 1. I’m thinking I’m going to need to supplement a bit for these first weeks of November to try and get their stores up. I wish I would have seen that before now, but I’ll take what I can get.
  • I pulled the Hopsguard from Hive 2 (none in Hive 1), and I didn’t see many mites. Granted I didn’t look that closely for them, but nothing stood out to me.
  • I also pulled the last of the honey supers. There was still a bit of honey in each, so I set those to the side for the bees to rob to their hearts’ content (do bees even have hearts? …). Just a few minutes ago, I went out, wrapped those supers in plastic and stored them in the shed.

I’m going to miss my bees this winter, and at the same time I’m not. I love the hobby. I’m very excited to see it expand out to four hives this coming spring. And while I’m excited and eager, I’m also looking forward to the break.

I think beekeeping is the perfect hobby for a guy like me. I get good breaks, the tasks change consistently, and the reward is incredible. But I will miss the late summer nights sitting out with my bees. There was just something uniquely soothing about a late evening leaning against the hives with the comings and goings. I remember reading in Beekeeping for Dummies that the author would go out and sit by the hives. You know, pull up a lawn chair and just sit there. I thought that weird at first, but I do love sitting there with my back against Hive 1 and just listening to the gentle hum of life. Sigh….

Oh… and I got propolis on the computer. 🙂

Here’s some pictures for you as a way of saying goodbye to the bees until the spring….

Not the bees of course, but does anything say fall sunshine like that? He fell asleep on the way home from picking up Katherine at school. That’s my kind of kid.

Me and my dad getting ready to head out. You can see Katherine’s birthday balloons in the background.

“Conjuring” the smoker to life. At least that’s what it looks like. Sadly, this was it for photos this hive inspection (the batteries died). I’m hoping to get a new camera some day for Courtney.

Speaking of Courtney….

Yes, that would be her ever-growing pregnant belly with a ghost face on it. Lest I lose my life by posting this, I’d just like the world to know that she’s always been a cute pregnant lady.

And so that Katherine isn’t left out, we found this taped to her bedroom door a few weeks back before we knew the gender of the upcoming baby.

Aren’t kids just great?

As the winter progresses, I’ll post what I can on the bees, but I expect it to go silent on that end for the most part. And so, until April or May, I suppose this is goodbye on the bee front. 😦

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One Response to Hive Inspection–October 31, 2011

  1. anytime it is 50 degrees or so your bees will be out doing their cleansing flight….you know, pooping all over the place:) it should start about february…so it won’t be too long before you need to do another hive check…you will probably split your hives, well, at least the strong one in April! yay for beekeeping! and yes i will do a honey trade with you…i would love to taste some of provo’s finest!
    aleisha

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