From the end of the nectar flow to mid september, we have had virtually no rain and therefore no nectar. After looking through most of my hives almost all my queens had stopped laying. The hives remained well populated and there was plenty of stored honey within each hive buy its as though the queen had put egg production on hold.
One good thing about this is that the numbers of varola mite in the hive should decline due to the minimal presence of capped brood and larvae, crucial in the life cycle of the mites!
The queens just know that if nectar flow is low, they slow down or stop laying!!
The weather is now good, with the mild weather supposed to continue for the next week at least. This is a crucial time of year for the bees but its looking very positive. Theres every chance the bees will be able to replenish their hives up before the onset of the cold winter weather days. Hopefully I wont need to feed too much candy at the end of November.
I had another look in my hives very recently and every hive has at least 2 frames of brood, so it just shows you how a nectar flow and a couple of weeks of warm weather can turn things around.
I took a few pictures of some frames of brood, eggs, Pollen and honey stores. Purely beuause they are such a great example how a frame should look.
Lovely coloured pollen
Brood, eggs, larvae and royal jelly
Good, strong and even laying brood pattern.
Excellent honey stores!
Next month Its varolla treatment with my new vaporiser. I wil be treating with vapourised oxalic acid crystals, 3 times over 3 weeks. That will be all I treat this year.
Mouse gurads must go up next month, mice can have a lot of fun munching their way around the hive when the bees are in a semi comatosed state.
Winter beekeeping continues. I have just finished making up the last of the lids and frame covers for the new nucs I have just made. You forget just how much work is needed.!
My frames should arrive soon. That will be the next job before I start building some more full sized hives around christmas time. Always plenty to do.
Start to check out places to put out swarm traps. It wont be long before that time of year comes around.!!
Keep collecting scrap wood every time you go past your local dump! One persons waste is a lot of girls happyness next year!!!