Major Upheaval in Hive A

I went into the hives last week to see how they were doing, and Hive A had built cross-comb between two frames. Sometimes you can fix that, but in this case the comb was a wavy mess between the frames, locking them together, so I knew I needed to go in and remove it so the bees could rebuild it right. At the same time, that hive needed another box to keep up with their massive growth.

Frames and boxes ready to be waxed

This morning Noel and I assembled the rest of the frames I got with my big order over the winter. I doubt that even with this crazy bloom season the two hives will use up all these boxes, but I wanted to be prepared.

Stupid comb building in Hive A

Then as soon as the sun moved away from being directly on the hives, I went out to do my work. This is the first of those frames with crazy comb. The holes are where the comb ripped out while I was pulling it out.

Two frames stuck together by the bees

In the days since I'd last gone in, the bees had stuck another frame to the bad spot; these two frames were quite well stuck together.

I was able to save one of those frames by cutting it off the other one and cutting out a large piece of weird saggy comb, but the other two had to be removed all together because they were so badly built out.

Adding a box below the bottom box

I added another box to the hive on the bottom, which is often an easier addition for the bees to understand than adding on the top. Now Hive A is at the full three boxes for their brood nest, and if they get any more boxes this year they will be honey boxes.

Sweeping bees off the frames

Noel was very impressed by how well-tempered the bees were about being swept off the frames I pulled out; they were actually better about it than I expected. This photo is me brushing some stragglers off this frame. I cut the brood parts out and fed them to the chickens, and the stored honey (some of which was sugar syrup that I fed them) we took inside and crushed out of the comb for Noel to use in his tea.

posted by ayse on 06/09/12