Tuesday, October 30, 2012

October Followup

So as you can tell I wasn't very good at keeping this up to date and now I'm doing bunch postings based off my notebooks.  October was not the best month for me and the bees sadly.  I kept up my feeding regimen even though I would have preferred to let them forage naturally, but we really didn't have a fall flow.

For winter prep I added top insulation, closed all my bottom entrances and prepped some fencing for wind blocks.  I live out in the middle of a corn field and the wind whips through here in the winter so  I thought it best to give them some assortment of wind break.

Hive recaps:

Hive 1:  Going strong, weighs a ton (had to move the hive to the concrete slab)  (Native bred queen)
Hive 2:  I'm not too worried about this hive it feels pretty heavy and should winter fine. (Carnelian from original nuc)

Hive 3: Robbed, but still has a fair amount of stores, downsized to a nuc box with 10 frames
Hive 4: Robbed blind over a weekend while I was gone lost the queen and a fair number of bee's to starvation -- remainder combined with hive 3

Nuc 1: (Hive 3&4 combine) seems to be doing alright after the combine, need to build a top entrance and add insulation still.
Nuc 2: Strong for a nuc, added insulation and a top entrance will hope it survives the winter.

Since its October 30th I doubt there's much more I can do for these bee's.  I do have the candy boards for later in the season and we'll see how they fair.  I'll keep a bi weekly check knocking on them to make sure they're still going and will probably add candy boards to them in a couple weeks.

I'm really wanting to ensure Nuc 2 survives so they may get moved to an observation hive that resides in my dining room for the winter.  However my better half is very leery of this idea so its taking a lot of sweet talking I just have to make him decide by this weekend because it's the last time it'll have enough semblance of warmth to move them to the observation hive and bring them in the house.