By Dudley Beck
July was pretty quiet, just checking hives to see if new boxes were needed for honey production.
Two of Wes Shook’s hives had no brood but plenty of bees. Our hope was that they had both recently swarmed and the colony was waiting for the new queen to mate and begin laying eggs. Two weeks later, one of Wes’s hives had a new capped brood–the queen was doing her thing! The other hive had a closed queen cell, which is a good thing. If it hatches, mates, and starts laying eggs, we should see capped brood again in two weeks. Wes will be checking in early September.
In late July, I discovered that one of my queens had died and the entire colongy was dead, cause unknown. Visualize Dudley crying. My other three hives looked good. KB’s two hives look good.
In mid-August, I discovered that another of my hives was queenless. After rechecking two weeks later and still queenless, I moved the moxes full of honey, pollen, and bees to the tops of my other two hives. We are hoping to get some honey to harvest, while still leaving some honey on the hives to help them overwinter. He have not caught any swarms in our swarm catchers.
Next month, we will report on the success or failure of Wes’s hive (the one waiting for a new queen). We plan to extract honey September 14 in Moab. The hives will then be left alone to stock up on food and pollen for the winter.