Susan Sokol Blosser was kind enough to update us on the hives that are buzzing away on the property!
The bees did not enjoy the heat wave. In an attempt to keep cool, they cluster on the front of the hive. This is called bearding but when it is 110 degrees being outside the hive doesn’t help much. I misted the area to help cool them off. I attached a photo of bearding on one of the hives.
But when we did a hive inspection when the heat wave broke, all the bees were doing well and making honey. I’ve attached a photo of one of the frames. The white at the top of the frame is all capped honey. I’ve told Chef Travis to expect about 5 gallons of estate honey this October.
Here are some great photos taken by Matt Getsinger’s wife, who accompanied him on our last inspection. Matt is our bee consultant, who is mentoring me on becoming a beekeeper. What is great about the first two photos is that you get to see the queen from one of the hives and see how she differs from the smaller worker bee. She is much longer than the other bees. This one is always hard to spot so when we saw her we captured her so Matt could put a white spot on the top of her head so we could find her readily in the future.
The third and fourth photos are the two of us opening the hives to inspect each of the frames. Matt is only partially suited up, but I go for full protection! We inspected the hives again this morning and I’m glad to say the bees are doing so well. We thought we would not have honey until October, but it will be much earlier as it turns out.