Sunday, July 21, 2013

Sunday Reading - Bee Update

Before I get started I would like to say that after looking at some articles and reports of the tribal "Trayvonista" protests this weekend I am now pretty convinced their entire little movement is failing terribly. I was a bit worried the other day when Obummer threw his pull into the thing and almost pleaded with his supporters to protest but as usual the "Golfer in Chief" Failed.

Yes the protests happened but turnout was so light from what I saw they are nothing to take seriously.

Of course the usual suspects, and yes I am profiling, will be using this Trayvon thing as an excuse for whatever they do for years now. Seriously when you think about it why would they riot and attack openly? That would just stir up something I don't think they want to stir.

Ok now on to a warm fuzzy bee update.

Several of you may have wondered what happened to the swarm I mentioned a few days ago, almost a week at this point I think. Well it went into one trap box, then came out of that one and went into another, then left that one and I lost track of it. Now today a swarm shows up in the original trap box and I am thinking it was the first swarm honestly as it seems the right size and none of my hives look to be in swarm mode right now.

A funny thing about late season swarms I have noticed. They are very unpredictable and much more inclined to abscond from a trap or hive box once captured. I am not sure this one will stay but I moved the trap over to a stand and will leave them there for a day. If they are still there Monday I will transfer them to a small nuc box because they are way too small for a full hive right now. They are going to need a lot of syrup love for the rest of the Summer and Fall.

I have my doubts this little ball of bees will build up enough before Winter but since we are getting more rain again today and forecasting more the next few days the excellent foraging should continue. At least they have that going for them.

The second little swarm I caught back in June is also graduating to full hive status this weekend so I have now definitely rebuilt from last years losses. In fact we have now reached growth numbers exceeding that of last years height.

And that means......

I have been building more hives once again. I put together five new brood boxes, modified three more bottom boards so they would take a solid plywood insert and repaired numerous other brood and medium boxes. Today I started painting these new additions and I should finish them up tomorrow.  After that I have at least 50 frames to put together all in preparation for continued build up before Winter. I hope the girls all manage to be in at least two drawn and filled brood chambers by October. The modified bottom boards should also keep them from getting so cold. Screened bottoms with plastic were fine for warmer Winters but I don't think they were sufficient for the harsher one we had this last Winter. I am upping my Winter insulating moves for this year.

Live and Learn. Sad it may have accounted for some bee deaths though.  The truth is the less insulation the more stores they need so I might as well do all that I can. It really didn't increase costs much to modify my existing bottom boards and any new ones I am making myself so this problem should be solved.

The first swarm of the season has also reached honey production status this week. I placed their second brood box on almost a month ago and added a medium honey super this week. I took a peek inside yesterday and they have already started filling the new box.

This has been a very good year for bees no doubt about that.

It has also been a good year for other bugs as well but more on that later this week.

Keep Prepping Everyone!!!!


  1. Glad to hear that you have rebounded from last year. As an FYI, my Sweetheart told me that she wants to be the beekeeper at our homestead. I'll gladly let her. Any suggestions for reference material besides your site?

    1. K - The bee keeping for dummies book is a pretty good start. Also if you order your first hive in a beginners package they usually include a book with it. The bee source forums I have linked on the right side is the best I have ever found for answering questions. Any problem you may encounter is covered. Also watch the you tube videos on bees they are often very informative as well.

  2. Beehappy, so glad things are way better this year then last. Things getting back to normal for the bees??

    We had a rally for TM here in Minneapolis, I think they said 200 showed. Looks like its going the way of the Occupy Movement. You know what is happening with this??, they get fired up, then they hit that crack pipe or get distracted by something else, and it dies off.

    1. Rob - Ya when I saw the 100's showing up Saturday I knew it was over as far as mass protesting goes. As I said though individual thugs will be murdering for years and blaming in Trayvon though.

  3. It's good to hear your bees are doing well. All the honey you can use and some to trade, no doubt. That's as good as gold.

    1. HF - Yep that is my plan. I figure when stuff goes bad people will line up for some honey when there is a lack of sugar around. Also it just seemed right for me. Production is going to be where it is at.

      Any kind of production.

  4. I need to get off my butt and find a hive...your bees fascinate me. Then again, this would allow the intrusive attention of our state government. The thought of state inspectors poking around my property puts a pucker in my anatomy.

    1. Stephen - Ya there are some states I would not keep bees. I don't know about Florida but I know Illinois is of course impossible to keep them without the State gov. crawling up your a$$.

      Here in Missouri they don't care but if you make money off them look out. I think you can fly under the radar if you stay under 30K a year though.


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