Archive for October 2015

Apiary: October 18th

This was the last session of the year, time to put the ladies to bed.  mouse guards and woodpecker guards time.   We have been feeding most colonies since September and now some are ready to come off the feed.

We are again trying to overwinter hives by under-supering but as little stores have been coming some supers were completely empty.   Under-supering is where a full or nearly full super is swapped from above the brood box to underneath, the advantage is that the bees, as they move about the hive , more frequently go down to the entrance to do poo flights and cross over the stores, so they know where food is available. It also moves the brood cluster higher up where its warmer (that’s my theory anyway).

This week we did not go through the colonies as they were all checked for being queen right last visit.  our main aim was to check stores and feed if necessary.

Weather:   Sunny,   15 C,  light wind.


Inspected by Liz H .

Brood Chamber:   14 x 12,   with 1 super, (part filled)

Mouse guard added, topped up with half litre heavy syrup, woodpecker cage put on.

Varroa board checked and 4o chalk brood bodies found , VCount  – 0.5/day.


Inspected by Nigel.

Brood Chamber:   14×12,  with 1 super ( part filled)

Mouse guard added, topped up feeder with 1″ sugar syrup, woodpecker cage put on. VCount – 2/day


Inspected by Phil G,

Brood Chamber:  National Deep.

Empty Super taken off, rapid feeder topped up ,mouse guard added and woodpecker cage on. VCount – 0.5/day


Inspected by Mel.

Brood Chamber:  National Deep. with  1 super.

Under supered from spare nearly full super from hive 5.  mouse guard added. feeder still full ( will take off next visit)  and woodpecker cage to be added.  VCount – 0


Inspected by Mel.

Brood Chamber:  National Deep.  2 supers,  one full, put under deep. other nearly full. ( put under no4) mouseguard added and woodpecker cage put on.  VCount –  1/day


Inspected by Peter R.

Brood Chamber: National Deep,   1 super  only part filled.  Rapid feeder topped up.  mouse guard put on and woodpecker cage added.   VCount –  1/day


Inspected by Peter R.

Brood Chamber:   2 National Supers.   with full top super .

Top super put under brood supers.   Mouse guard and woodpecker cage added.  VCount – 2 /day


Inspected by Peter R

Brood Chamber: National Deep and Shallow.   1 super,  part filled.

Rapid feeder topped up with heavy syrup.  Mouse guard and woodpecker cage added. V Count –  > 0.5 /day

Hive#9   Warre Hive  Not inspected,  but woodpecker cage added. and feed topped up.

Hive#10 Top Bar Hive.

Inspected by Peter R.

Doing fine, but still needing feeding. Rapid feeder topped up

Nucleus 15 F

Inspected by Liz H

Brood Chamber: National  Deep.

MAQS strips (put on 10/10 ) taken off,   feeder replaced and refilled. mouse guard put on and woodpecker cage added VCount –  20/day ( due to treatment)

Poly  Nucleus

Inspected by Richard W.

Quick check through after used for demonstration hive at Blackmoor apple day.  Q seen, BAS. all seems ok. stores low so topped up integral feeder.  cage put over the top.   VCount – > 0.5/day






Apiary: 18th October

Autumn is here, the leaves on the trees are changing colour and falling and I have had a frost on the ground at Frog’s Hole.       This is the last of the official club visits to the apiary, as the clocks go back next Sunday, making it too late in the day to start opening hives.   The Apiary Trustees will still be checking and feeding every now and then.  We will hopefully be arranging for a Sunday morning event to sterilise the drawn comb supers, using acetic acid.  Date to be arranged.

The bees are also shutting down, the queen now laying only 50 -100 eggs a day.   Foragers are still flying and bringing back nectar and pollen from ivy on the warmer days but the amount of stores in the hives has been very low and feeding with heavy syrup   (1kg to 625 ml ) still on-going  to most of the colonies.  no5  and no 7 being the exception, with full supers now put under the brood box’s.     Mouse guards and woodpecker cages have also been added for the winter.

We still have the varroa boards in as we are monitoring the drop after dosing with MAQS strips.  This seems to be very high while the sealed brood is still hatching, possibly proving that the varroa are killed even in the sealed brood.

Apiary : 4th October

There were only five of us on Sunday afternoon.   The sun was out and the wind not too bad but still a bit chilly. The  bees were out and flying, working the ivy.    The main aim of the afternoon was to check queenright after the MAQS treatment, check stores and  refill  feeders.

The Warre hive needed attention as the frames transferred from the nuc and cut down to fit, required being refixed  to the top bars.

All the MAQS strips for varroa treatment were taken off  on 20th and the entrance blocks replaced and varroa boards inserted on 29th September.  Heavy syrup feed was put on those colonies in need.

Weather:  15 C    Sunny spells,  light wind.


Inspected by Liz H,

Brood Chamber   14 x 12

Queen Not Seen (QNS), No QCells, 2 frames brood,  6 frames of stores. No Super.

Temper: 8

1 litre of heavy syrup put on.

varroa count : 6   in 7 days


Inspected by Mel

Brood chamber 14 x 12.      1 super

Queen seen,  No QCells, 3 frames brood, 3 frames stores.

Temper :  9

added Varroa board, young larva, no eggs seen.  1 litre syrup put on, broken lug on 14×12(foundation) replaced with dummy board.


Brood chamber,  -National  deep.     1 super

QNS.  3 frames brood and new eggs, 3D stores,  super empty.

Temper:  9

Feed half taken,  but had been put below super, so feed topped up and added above super.

no Varroa,  board cleaned and replaced.


Inspected by Richard W

Brood Chamber: National deep.    1 Super

QNS.  3 frames of Brood all stages, and new eggs.  4D frames,2S  of stores


Rapid feeder topped up with  1 litre syrup

Varroa count – 30 in 7 days.


Inspected by Peter R

Brood Chamber –  National Deep.   2 supers

QNS,  3 frames of brood, and new eggs.  4D frames stores.  one super full 2nd starting to fill.

Varroa count –  30 in 7 days.

Temper 8


Inspected by Liz H

Brood chamber – National Deep.   1 super

QNS, 2 frames of brood, 3 frames stores, super nearly empty, ( poss taken down into D)   feeder left on.

Varroa count – 15 in 7 days

Temper:  9


Inspected by Mel

Brood Chamber –   2 shallow  National.    1 super

Queen seen,  4 frames of  brood, 4 stores, 1 litre of syrup  added

Varroa board added

Temper:  8


Inspected by Peter R

Brood Chamber –   Shallow and Deep.      1 Super

QNS,   4 Frames of brood,  2 D frames of stores. – not much in super.  1 litre heavy syrup added

Varroa board added

Temper:  9


Warre Hive.

Inspected by Brad D

QNS,  3 frames of brood, 5 of stores, room ok.

Brood frames cut down from National deeps had been strapped up to the top bars with masking tape, now eaten through.  Frames restrapped and hive reassembled.     Small  half litre feeder ontop empty, refilled with heavy syrup.

Temper: 6


Inspected by Peter R

Top Bar Hive

Queen seen, 3 frames of brood,  1 of stores.    Topped up with 1 litre of heavy syrup

Temper: 8

Nucleus  15 F

Brood Chamber – National Deep.

Queen seen,  4 frames of brood,  3 frames of stores, plenty of room.    rapid feeder put on with 1 litre heavy syrup.

Temper: 8

Nucleus 15H

Poly Nuc.

QNS,  2 frames of brood, new eggs and larva,  half frame of stores, plenty of room.

Inbuilt feeder topped up with syrup.