A blog originally for keeping track of my hobby of being a Beekeeper which has evolved to include Home Brewing and even more recently to follow me and my families approach to "The Good Life". Eventually I hope to include baking recipes and stories of our flock of chickens also reporting on the success and failure at the allotments.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Apiary inspection 26/07/2011

Over the last couple of weeks I got an email from Wakefield and Pontefract Beekeepers telling me that there was a potential new Beekeeper in the village I live in. They passed me his contact details and today we arranged to meet up so I could show him my Bees. He had already been to see another apiary in the village, but the other apiary had several more hives than mine, I believe he said around 15 hives all together!

At around 3PM I met up with him and we headed up to the apiary together. Upon arrival we suited up and lit the smoker then headed into the apiary. The first job I did was remove the varroa board and scrape the contents into a box so I could do a varroa count later on. After that I handed the camera over to him and asked if he would take photos as I went. 

First I took the roof off

Next I removed the super and put it to one side exposing the Queen excluder

Then the Queen excluder was removed, making sure the Queen wasn't on the underside

I then removed the plastic dummy board
The first frame with capped stores

The capped cells in this one are worker brood

Queen Beeatrix with her entourage 

Me and a Bee inspecting a frame

Holding the hive tool so it's at hand when needed

I tried to remove as much of the excess comb on the top of the frames

A frame from the supers

Capped honey stores

Looking into a super

After we had checked all the frames in both the supers and the brood chamber I added another super so there are now 2 supers on the hive; this gives the Bees plenty more room to store honey as there is a good honey flow on at the moment.

When I had dropped my visitor off I returned home and poured the contents from the varroa floor onto a sheet of white paper and counted the mites on there. I counted 14 mites and then using the calculator on the Beebase website I got the following information:
Average Daily Mite Fall = 2.0 varroa mites
Estimated number of adult varroa mites in the colony = 80
Treatment is recommended in about 2 month(s) time (counting from day of first monitoring).

Varroa mites