Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Eat, drink, and Bee Mary

Hello Everyone,

My name is Mary McIvor and Dave has asked that I make an occasional post as one of the newbies to beekeeping. I am so excited the bees are coming tomorrow--I feel like an expectant mother!

I have so many questions and I also have concerns about how to tell how my hives are doing. My idea is that we share information about what we are observing with our new hives and discuss what we find. Maybe this way we can tell if we are doing okay by our bees. Dave and Craig, feel free to let us know if you notice anything in our posts that concerns you or, even better, that you find promising!

The second benefit I see is that it might encourage us to keep better hive records. Let's wait until after the next weekend to give everyone a chance to watch your bees for a week or so, then you can comment on this post.

This week's request is that you give us some feedback about how much sugar water your bees are consuming.
  • Are your hives feeding at the same rate?
  • It would be helpful if you could estimate how many quarts per week, so our units are the same.
  • After a few weeks, it might help us determine when the bees have discovered a nectar flow, as consumption of sugar water should decline.

  • If you can also give your general area, we may even be able to track differences between hives in various parts of the Methow.
Thanks so much and happy hiving! :)



Jan said...

We checked our two hives this morning. The queens are out and we saw one but not the other. No unusual activity so we know the 'missing' queen is there.

We have three frames of honey from last year in each box plus a large capacity top feeder so we can't really tell how much they are eating. They do look quite busy.

We lost both hives over the winter. Both hives had plenty of honey left over so they didn't starve. There were dead bees all through both hives and there was no disease. Cause unknown.

This time we repositioned the hives to face E-SE and have followed Craig's idea of drilling a 1" hole in the front of each box for better ventilation and removal of humidity. We'll see how that goes.

Lee Hatcher said...

After a day and a half one of our hives consumed a quart of honey. The other hive had some problem with the top so a lot of the syrup leaked out and was flowing out the front of the box. I replace it with a new top and now appears to be working properly.

anncor said...

Ann here in Mazama. Cor just ran in to tell me the workers are making comb. I have not opened up the hive: I thought I would wait a week. One quart of syrup used in two days, and all is quiet after yesterday's snow.

Jen said...

Our beezz are eating 3/4 of a quart of syrup/day/quart. We have two hives and they reside on Upper Beaver Creek. Pretty quiet around the outside of the hive - no syrup coming out of the bottom so they must bee using it. Jen

Lee Hatcher said...

the cold weather seems to have drastically reduced syrup consumption. 1/2 quart in two days for each hive. then yesterday with it warm in the afternoon the syrup began disappearing. By this morning I had to give each hive another quart. The hives are quiet in the cold but when it warms up there is a lot of activity - bees flying around the hive and making sorties out around the yard and beyond.