Thursday, September 23, 2010
A honey bee update.
The bees seem to be fine, but I haven't done a hive inspection in weeks so who knows what's going on in there. It's been good that I haven't checked much as the summer wore on because the less the bees are bothered by the human involved the better they'll be. Possible threats that I could look for include mites, small hive beetles, foulbrood, and wax moths. I'll think about that soon, and then I'll have to decide if I'll take any action if I DO find any pests. I may not.
I started with 5 frames of bees and I now have 40 frames of bees, brood, and honey (well, sugar water honey for the most part). I haven't seen the queen for a long time but she appears to be doing a great job laying those eggs so hats off to The Queen! My goal this year was simply to end up going into the winter with a high population of bees and enough food to get them through till spring.
I'm feeding them a lot and the girls are sucking down more than a gallon of sugar water a day. I guess I'll just keep feeding them until...until what? It gets too cold to open the hive? So much I don't know.
I love beekeeping but am not sure I'm well-suited to it temperamentally. I worry too much. It's an activity that takes a lot of patience and optimism, neither of which I have in abundance. And I am highly suggestible, so when I read about potential problems I imagine that I have them all. I'll keep them over the winter and if they survive, I may donate them to another beekeeper in the spring.