Hive Update: May & June

May

The new colony is doing well! The queen has been successfully released, and the worker bees have been busy foraging. The overwintered colony is also in good health! The queen is laying well and is building up her colony’s population. The workers are busy collecting nectar and pollen as well. 

June

The right colony has a healthy amount of worker and drone brood. When worker bees hatch from their cell they emerge with the duties of a “nurse bee”, which includes cleaning the cells and feeding developing brood. After a few weeks they transition to take on responsibilities of a forager bee, flying up to 5 miles to collect nectar and pollen for the ever growing colony.

In the left beehive, there are no eggs yet to indicate that a new queen was mated and laying. It can take a few weeks for this to happen. Fortunately, they still have tons of honey and  workers bees present.

This is “high tide” of the beekeeping season. Populations are still on the rise, and nectar and pollen are flowing.  The brood temperature is important to the colony’s success and it needs to remain between about 91 and 96 degrees Fahrenheit to mature properly.  If the colony’s temperature rises above 104 degrees Fahrenheit, individuals of the colony will festoon outside of the inner confinements to allow more airflow into the brood’s nest. This thermoregulatory behavior is also known as “bearding” because it can look as if the hive has a beard of bees on the outside of the box.  This is completely normal behavior for healthy colonies during hot and humid weather.

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