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Natural Beekeeping > General Chat > Spring Nearly Here

Title: Spring Nearly Here

Paul - February 19, 2011 09:54 PM (GMT)
Signs of spring are in the hedgegrows, catkins abound, snowdrops are out and daffs are well on their way.
My one and only colony seem healthy enough and were bringing in lots of pollen today. I guesstimated they had between 10-15 lbs of honey as stores going into winter. Of course we are not out of the woods yet, so to here's hoping they continue to survive. I've put some fondant in the hive. It's been in there a week, but they haven't touched it.
How are everyones bees fairing so far? And is there anyone out there?

Janco2 - February 20, 2011 10:22 PM (GMT)
Hi Paul,
Pleased to hear all is well with your bees so far. We have also seen our bees out and about and feeding on gorse flowers yesterday. Not sure how much honey they have left in store and we haven't fed them since last autumn. We'll just have to keep an eye on them and hope for the best.

Tavascarow - February 24, 2011 11:58 PM (GMT)
Mine are pulling a fair amount of hazel pollen.

Vee - March 12, 2011 04:34 PM (GMT)
Hello! And happy new year.
All 4 hives alive and well - especially the Truro hive which is booming.
The 3 Ladock hives haven't been taking their fondant and I haven't checked the Truro bees as they seem so busy I'm not worried - however, several of these died as they came home carrying full pollen bags - I have a feeling that they may have met a nasty spray.
I'm now frantically manufacturing 2 Warre hives - both for Truro; 1 for my house and 1 for farmland at the northern perimeter where I'll also put a TBH.
As soon as I see drones I shall be examining in order to make a split on 2 of the hives - probaby mid-to-late-April.
Cheers, Vini

columbinegarden - April 7, 2011 08:25 PM (GMT)
Hi everyone,
I've just come out of winter hibernation I think. I have found that I am not checking in now that we don't get emails when a new post goes up, as Klaudia has said.
My bees have survived the winter very well and seem to be doing very well. Very active in the sunshine. This evening, as it was gettin dark, I went out to remove the last of the 3 corks limiting their entrance holes, as there seemed to be so many trying to get in and out at the same time during the day. They were very noisy and there were a few fanning at the entrances, sounding very cross. I looked in the observation window and bees filling everywhere. They must have been building repidly since I last looked maybe 3 weeks ago. I could smell sweet bee smell neat the hive. I will add some more new top bars over the weekend but I was wondering when they could swarm, as there seem to be so many bees in there. I have a bait hive but haven't put it out yet as I thought we are a bit early? I do want to try to catch swarms as it looks as though Mum and Dad (Janco) are likely to need one to replace theirs which is looking a bit 'Marie Celeste' (sorry Mum!)

I know you can take honey off in the spring. Anyone know when it is OK to do this, and how to be sure I will only be taking what they can afford to lose?


Paul - April 11, 2011 09:11 PM (GMT)
I read on the Biobees site that someone had already experienced their bees swarming.
It sounds as though your hive is in a healthy position and that to take a bar of honey off shouldn't pose too much of a problem.
Freeing up some space could even be beneficial.
If unsure, you could remove a bar, store it somewhere safe for a while with the option of returning it to the hive if you deem necessary.
As a matter of interest, coming out of winter did you have many dead bees in your hive?
I scrapped out about fifty or more at the weekend that had clearly been dead for some time.

Tavascarow - April 12, 2011 09:16 PM (GMT)
Your bees wont swarm until there are drones in the hive.
Taking a bar or two of honey wont hurt as long as there is plenty left for the bees to feed the brood with.

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