Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Installation of a New Package of Spring Bees at Abbott Honey Apiary 2014

New Package of Bees arrived today from Kentucky
I got a call from the Gloucester Post Office at 6:30AM. Luckily my phone was on and we were so glad to hear that the Bees had arrived. It has been very difficult to obtain new bees this season as so many people lost their hives over the winter including us. We have friends in Vermont who lost 40 hives. I had a couple of very strong hives that had wintered over in Gloucester before so I was surprised and sad to lose them but I was able to get some new bees to replace them. I got these from Kelly Bees. I have had good luck with them in the past. They only allowed me to buy one package and that was after 2 emails and 2 phone calls where I basically had to beg them to sell me one. It is kind of scary that it is so difficult to get new bees. I heard of several people on Cape Ann losing their bees this last winter as well as many people across New England.

This is Charlie opening up the bee package
this morning, you can see the open hive body behind him. I had sprayed the frames in the hive with essential oils and sugar water to start things off.

Taking out the Syrup Can 
which is put into each package to feed the bees during their travels.

Once he took the can out there was a 
huge whoosh of bees coming out 
strongly. They were quite happy to get out and the package seemed lively and strong with very few dead bees. 
A good sign.

The majority of the bees got dumped into a new deep hive body I had from last year. 
I decided to start this hive out with a fresh body and frames for this colony just to make sure they get going well.
Close of of some of the bees coming out of the package
Charlie placed a hive cover at an angle
so the straggler bees could easily march up to the hive entrance. It was really incredible how well this worked.

Suits hanging on cloths line, I wore mine, Charlie didn't wear his.
We really didn't need protection. The bees were very docile.
I wore my suit, didn't need it!

Bees marching up the hive cover.
I took a Video of this below because at the entrance it seemed like they were marching into the hive in formation. Pretty Amazing to see the Hive Mind at Work!

at installation. 

For all the people who are asking me if I have honey. I do have some frames I am going to process soon, so I will have honey by June and I will make any announcement for those of you who want to buy some. I am also going to replicate some of my mint and lavender honeys from last year. Those were really popular!  So far the Garden and the Apiary is getting off to a promising start.

Happy Bee Keeping 2014,
Melissa Abbott