Life at Indigo Acres has been extremely busy. Our last few weeks have been spent tending to the gardens and storing 400+ bales of hay, in the hay barn. We need approximately 450 bales of hay, each year, for the animals. At least the heat and humidity have calmed down a bit, making the task of stacking hay a bit more manageable! We did take a few hours to hang out with the bees and check in on Thelma II, Louise and the ladies…
Overall, Thelma II is doing a fabulous job! Her frames were filled with eggs. It was nice to see so much activity in the hive, now that Thelma II has settled in. Although Thelma I is no longer with us, her daughters are being much more efficient with their new Queen. Our hope is that enough bees with hatch and store a full supply of honey, to sustain the hive, through our long Michigan Winter.
We are already looking ahead to Spring 2019, when we will add two more colonies to our apiary. We have decided to call our two new Queens, Laverne and Shirley. How exciting!
Yesterday was a very exciting day at Indigo Acres! As many of you know, we requeened one of our hives last week. Thelma I was failing her hive, and a new queen needed to be introduced, asap.
Last Wednesday, we inserted the small queen cage between two of the hive frames. The worker bees were left to decide if they would accept their new queen or not. Yesterday, we opened the hive to check on Thelma II. The opening you see in the photo is where the “queen candy” plug was. The worker bees ate through the candy and released Thelma II!
The energy around and in the hive was amazing. What a difference one very important bee can make to the life and success of a colony. I am so excited to open the hive next Sunday. My hope is to find lots and lots of eggs! Long live Thelma II!
While inspecting Louise’s hive, I noticed some movement under one of the capped brood cells. A baby bee was chewing her way out of the cell! As you can see in the photo, her little head is poking out. Soon she will be another very important worker bee in the colony.
I am excited to announce that I just placed an order for two new colonies, of Italian honey bees, for Spring of 2019. How exciting! I wonder what we should name our next Queens…any thoughts?
Yesterday was a very exciting day at Indigo Acres. Thelma II, our new Queen, was shipped overnight and arrived at 10:30 am. As soon as she arrived, we suited up and headed out to the apiary. It was time to re-queen our hive.
We kept Thelma II at a distance, until we knew we had Thelma I successfully removed from the hive. The hive is slowly growing in numbers, so it took a bit of time to locate her. By the 4th frame, she presented herself. I carefully removed her from the colony and placed her in her own sealed container.
Once again, it was obvious she was not working to potential. There were minimal new eggs to be found. The worker bees, on the other hand, were very busy making honey! What an impressive work ethic! Today, the theme of the hive appeared to be teamwork…
Each time I visit the hives, I become more impressed with the bee community! We have so much to learn from these tiny creatures.
Sunday, we will check the hives and find out of Queen Thelma II has been released by the colony! Let’s BEE positive and hope for the best!