Monthly Archives: May 2014

Are my bees drunk?

Because why else would they be building comb like this: And this: These are frames from the second hive body on Hive 2 (the strong one). Why would they all of a sudden start building wonky comb, when previously they were drawing nice bee keeper-friendly comb within the frame foundations? This is burr comb, or in this case, bridge comb, because it is comb drawn perpendicular to the frames, and actually forms a bridge joining two adjacent frames.  I did what

Two steps forward, one step back…

So, remember a couple posts back where I said we added a second brood box to hive 1? Well this past weekend during our inspection, we decided to backtrack and remove it. It had been in place for 4 days and there was absolutely no activity on it. Our strong hive (hive 2) already had 4 frames being drawn and eggs being laid in the same amount of time after adding the second brood box on it, so we knew

Bee fashionable

My friend Caitlin texted me last night to say “Bees are everywhere!” She saw this scarf and thought of me.  She was sweet enough to pick it up for me and it was waiting on my desk at work this morning.  Love it! Thanks Caitlin!

Delving into the hive life

A week ago (3 weeks after installation), hive 2 had drawn out about 75% of the frames, which is the point at which most beekeepers add a second brood chamber. If you fail to give the queen enough room to lay eggs, the colony may decide to swarm and leave the hive. To avoid this, we added a second brood chamber above the first. To our surprise, after only 1 week with the second story, this past weekend’s inspection revealed 4

Queen B

At happy hour on Friday, my co-workers and I came up with the perfect name for the Queen in hive 2. With apologies to the Bloggess (who I love!) for stealing the name of her giant metal chicken, we christened our second queen “Beeyoncé”! We did a hive inspection Sunday afternoon, and Beeyonce is an egg-laying machine! Almost 3 frames in the new 2nd brood chamber we added a week ago are absolutely filled with eggs and larva! Go Queen B!  

Hive Personalities

Just over 2 weeks into our beekeeping adventures, and already each Hive has been developing its own personality. We had plans to name the hives something witty but so far are just calling them Hive 1 and 2.  Anyway…during this weekends inspection, we observed that Hive 2 is about double the population of Hive 1. The bees had drawn out more than 6 of the eight frames with wax, 2 frames of which are now “sealed brood”. This means that

Storm Preparations (last week)

Early last week the entire southeastern US was hit with some pretty severe weather. We were woken up at 5:45 am on Tuesday by the University’s warning sirens, indicating a tornado warning was in effect. Not a nice way to be woken from a deep sleep! Fortunately, we didn’t get anything but some heavy rain, but further east in NC there were some tornadoes and golf ball size hail. The forecasted severe weather got us thinking about what we should do