At the risk of sounding adverse to work…..these ladies are high maintenance!
This past weekend Linnear, my mentor, agreed to help me medicate the main hive and the swarm of naughty bees, who are still in time-out. There are a variety of medications on the market as well as a variety of views on which one is the best to use. Of course, because of the cold weather and the status of my hive, the method of treatment recommended to me is the one that is messiest…Hopguard. Yep, made from hops. I like the idea that its base is organic but it seems next to impossible not to drown a number of bees in the process of applying the strips. There is nothing sadder than a honeybee stumbling because she is dripping with a sticky, brownish-red liquid.
One might infer from the title of this posting that I am fed up with the ladies and the amount of worry and work they seem to be throwing my way. Actually, I still adore them. They are cute and fuzzy and such hard workers. That said, I admit to you all that I am slightly disappointed that I won’t have the opportunity to sample the fruits of their labors. Their honey reserve is almost non-existence as a result of their attempts to move, putting them in a tenuous situation. I am afraid the ladies run the risk of not making it through the winter. Thankfully, Linnear has a few ideas up her mentor sleeve.
As soon as I got home from school today, I attempted to move a honey super from the original hive to the swarm hive but unfortunately there too many delicate nurse bees hanging out on the frames. So, I put on a bee excluder under the honey super, this will allow bees to go further down in the hive but prevent them from re-entering the honey super. Tomorrow night I will attempt to remove the honey super and give it to the swarm hive for nourishment. I will beginning pushing a thick sugar syrup for the ladies in the original hive. Wow, it sounds as if I know what I am doing!!!! Throwing around bee lingo like I understand the whys and hows of all that I am doing for the girls. Not really, but I am slowly piecing it all together.
I do not know the first thing about hermit crabs but they certainly are not cute and fuzzy. I guess I’ll stick with bees.