Friday, May 20, 2011

Bees day 3

Today was day 3 for the new bees.  I was a little hesitant to open the hive and check on the queeen, not quite at ease with the bees yet. After feeding the cats and dogs I went out to the hive. The syrup feeder used close to a pint of syrup in the past 24 hours. The bees were busy leaving and seemed awkward when  returning. No pollen was seen on any of the worker bees.

Here are two worker bees, the girls of course! The brood depend on these girls to gather the food, clean and tend the hive, drones and the queen.
This is a drone a male bee. These do not sting so they are harmless. They live out their lives for one thing to mate with a queen. Mature drones will leave the hive and gather with other drones in hopes of a virgin queen dropping in to mate with several of them. Once mated the drones die. Drone can not feed themselves or gather food, the worker bees feed the drones and they feed the queen too.
Today when I opened the hive I looked for the queen, the cage was empty. One frame was covered in bees so deep if there was a queen in there you could not see her. I did remove the duct tape that held in the queen box, no dead bees were on it.
The workers are drawing out the combs as you can see here. In other 2 days I'll check the hive again to look for the queen and signs of eggs and larva.

I did get a sense of ease this time entering the hive. The other day my smoker was going crazy, today I smoked the hive and it went out. After maybe 5-10 minutes the bees were swarming me slightly, it appeared that one bee tried to sting my finger in the goat skin glove but failed to reach me. So no stings this time around and this hive is now their home.

It was a bit difficult to handle the camera with one gloved hand. These photos came out fairly good considering.

Nope this is not turning into a bee blog. The blog is still a garden blog and things related to the garden including nature and I love bugs.


ann said...

I am quite fascinated with your bee project. I have been following another blogger's bee project. You might check it out:

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

Looks like things are going well there! Really great pictures too.
I saw a couple of damselflies today and finally starting to see honey bees too. I'm learning to love more bugs other than ladybugs and butterflies :)

Sarah Knight said...

Bees are pretty awesome ; )

Cameron said...

I don't mind your Bee Saga -- it's informative! Though, I try not to look at the swarms of bees for too long -- no nightmares! :-)

Curbstone Valley Farm said...

Looking good, it's always amazing how fast they draw comb. Wait until they're consuming 1 QUART of syrup a day, that'll keep you on your toes. Great drone shot by the way!

Good luck, I think ours has become a bee blog...I can't remember the last time I posted about the garden...except the bees are in the garden ;)

I'd maybe wait a week before checking the hive again. You're only at day 3. In both of our package hives at 6 days we only saw a hint of 1 day old eggs, and they're darned difficult to find and see on new white wax. If we'd looked the day before, we wouldn't have seen anything. Once you see pollen coming in the hive entrance, you should expect to easily see larva in the hive without having to squint!

Caroline Gill said...

Amazing bee, photos, Randy. You really must be pleased, considering the lengths you had to go to, to take them!

Corner Gardener Sue said...

Hi Randy,
I just read your last 2 posts about the bees while eating my salad, mostly from my garden, for lunch. I love your bee photos, and what you said about liking bugs. I hope things are OK with the queen and the rest of the bees. How exciting! I'm looking forward to seeing how they do.

I looked up that swamp rose. It does look similar to mine, but the flowers on mine are only about half an inch in diameter. The leaves are small, too. The plant/bush itself is taller this year than it had been in the past, about 2 and a half feet. Well, I'm going to putz around outside a little before leaving to cook supper with a group from my church at a local outreach center. See you later!

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Randy! I KNOW you love bugs! Me, too... but I'm nowhere an expert... just love 'em! (well... maybe not wood/deer ticks!)

I have to tell you two things! 1) One of my granddaughters (age 5) has a new pet: a Madagascar hissing cockroach! It is kind of pretty - and she loves it! :-)

2) I just planted two new hellebores - 'Peppermint Ice.' Doubles! Hope they thrive!!

I'm going to tell you that I would never be comfortable raising bees - even though I know it's important. Thank you for doing it for the rest of us!! Have a great day and keep up the great work!

Tatyana@MySecretGarden said...

Amazing! I love bees and I think they are the greatest insects! Enjoyes your pictures!

. . . Lisa and Robb . . . said...

I'd advise you to leave the bees alone for a while. Opening up the hive is *very* disruptive, and this is a delicate time in the life of the colony.

Chandramouli S said...

It's fun following your bee-keeping. I admire your bravery - no really, I wouldn't dare to inspect a HIVE!