Apiary meeting Sat 15th June 2019

Apiary meeting Saturday 15th June. One colony was dead, starved, some of our other colonies were very short of stores. The “June gap” plus the poor weather is making this season very poor and attention to saving the bees at the moment is a priority. Most beekeepers have found that the bees are very “grumpy” and smoking the bees makes them worse, there are little stores in the brood box and when smoked they have no nectar/honey to go to.If you need to check your bees for stores its best to use a water/syrup spray to calm the bees down. Try to avoid getting the spray on your gloves as they will be all over them. The unfortunate colony that died had several frames of brood but no stores, the bees managed to keep the queen alive in case conditions improved. The queen was introduced to a queenless nuc. Some full colonies had to be fed as the supers were empty,of course take the supers off first so the stores are near the brood box. It goes without saying feed any nucs.
We had reports that a lot of virgin queens haven’t mated properly, could it be the weather? there seems plenty of drones around. Not the best season, quite a contrast to 2018! fingers crossed it picks up, Paynes have extracted their Rape honey and have put the supers back on in anticipation that conditions improve.

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