Thursday, October 19, 2006

Ready for 'Ole Man Winter

I did a very thorough inspection in all 3 hives today and I'm very pleased with the overall condition of each hive. It would appear the 2:1 sugar syrup I've been feeding with the hive top feeders has really paid off. All hives are about 85% honey bound. I've very optimistic about the chances for surviving the Winter. There are a fair amount of eggs, larvae & capped brood in each hive, so I know the hives are all Queen right.

The weather has been cool, wet & humid over the past few days. I've noticed since installing the hive top feeders a lot of condensation is accumulating on the underside of the inner cover. Propping the outer cover up with a stick or rock would reduce the moisture level of the hives but also allows direct access to the syrup and the bees could drown. I used some mesh screen to cover the hole in the inner cover. Here's a picture of the modification to the inner cover. I can now prop open the outer covers and I don't have to worry about losing bees to drowning. This will allow the hives to ventilate and reduce the moisture content.

I also added a couple gallons of syrup to each hive top feeder after my inspection today. I doubt they will take it all and I anticipate this being the last time I feed them for awhile. I also noticed the population of the small hive beetles has drastically been reduced. Finally...I've got the upper hand over these little *&%#$@ ! ! !

Since these hives are elevated, I'm not too concerned with mice or other critters. To be on the safe side I have installed wire mesh in the entrance to reduce the chances of any un-invited house guests.

No comments: