L1 Inspection

3 boxes
Queen excluder
Under 1000 bees
Sunny, no breeze, 65F°
Mellow mood

Box 3
1 frame with half capped honey and pollen
All others combed but empty


Box 2
Nectar traffic, fresh deposits
7 frames capped honey front and back
2 frames combed but empty
1 frame with small easterly grouping of done brood, some pollen and nectar in good pattern. And a cluster of what could be a queen cell uncapped.
About 300 nursing bees, under 2 weeks old, few foragers, one or two drones
No brood, no eggs

Box 1
No queen
No eggs
Drone brood in 8 frames, easterly, capped and few emerging
Migration must have happened two to four weeks ago
All frames have at least half pollen and half honey capped and some nectar at edges

Next steps:
Merge with another hive or bring in NUC. Plenty of food. No robbing going on. About half of all workers are young.




Box 2, frame 6 cluster

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Formic Strip Removals

Off P2
Saw very young larvae on top box middle frame.

Both P2 and P4 very defensive, cranky.

Removed formic strips off C2 and C5.
Queen sighted on C5. There are eggs and young larvae on both.

Fed C1, C2, C3, C4 and C6.

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Camino, Dec 1

Time: started 11:30am
Conditions: only C3 and C6 were in sunlight when I started; sun on remaining 4 when I finished at 12:10.

Overall, saw too many crawlers and dead bees on ground, some minor deformed wings; treated all hives with formic.
Need two more boxes for C1 and C2. Fed only C4.

C3: med strength hive; bees in both of two boxes; enough food, had eggs, brood in all stages. One formic strip.

C6: (Jeremy Rose queen) lots of bees in both boxes, plenty of food. Bees moderately annoyed at being disturbed. Medium strength. Surprised to find only a few frames of brood in bottom box, but they were in good shape. Another box? One formic strip.

C4: weak. Saw queen, eggs, capped brood, but protein supplement mostly untouched. Still had syrup in feeder (when did we last add syrup? Yesterday or a week ago?). Gave protein and topped up syrup. Removed top box and added to C5, now one box only. One formic strip.

C2: strong. Full of bees, lots of stores. Checked only one brood frame in top box, gorgeous, side to side brood. One formic strip. Might need another box?

C5 (Jeremy Rose queen): very strong, lots of stores, brood in top box with great honey and pollen ring. TWO formic strips on second box, then added empty third box from C4.

C1: strong. Top box very full of honey. Cranky bees, so did not pull brood from bottom box to check. Scraped a lot of wax from between top/bottom box. Added one formic strip to bottom box. Bring another empty box.


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Portsmouth, Nov 30 & Dec 1

P2: strong. Top box fairly full of honey, with one frame having a edge of brood. Five great frames of brood in the bottom box. Saw dark Russian queen! Treated with formic. Gave some protein. Moved empty box from P4 to top, 3 boxes now.


P4: weak. Saw queen, all stages of brood, only three frames. Added feeder/syrup & protein. One formic strip.

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10-Frame Boxes Added to C1 and C2

C1′s s placed in between the existing two.
C2′s went right on top, to make three.
Bees calm. Sunny. No wind. 60F.

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Formic Acid Removal/Winter Tops Installations, Camino, Part 1

Gusty winds, sunny, lower 50F°s.
Bees understandably upset.
Removed strips of formic acid treatment against varroa mites.
None were placed in C4, there were two in C5.
Bees looked well, strong population sizes.

Formic strips.



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Formic Acid Removal/Winter Tops Install, Laurel

L1 were upset, bombing, buzzing, diving. But all is done. L2 still small but hanging in there.
Signs of crystallization on propolis.

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Formic Strip Removal/Winter Tops Install, Laurel


L1, in back, very aggressive.

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Formic Strip Removal/Winter Tops Install, Camino part 1



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Lost P4 to Ant Invasion

P4 wasn’t large, only two boxes with about one thousand bees. Two days ago I saw what appeared to be a swarm on a branch of a youngling tree not 7′ off the ground. In a matter of two hours, from 9:30am to 11:30am they were gone. Betsy and I looked around the sunny areas around the block but didn’t find them.

We had placed an inner syrup feeder and plenty of homemade food in preparation for winter. They got overrun by ants.

Haven’t found yet an effective defense against ants. Deterrents work as precisely that, particularly preferred cinnamon.

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