Thought for the Day

Last week was a good and productive time in the bee yard. I made a lot of headway preparing for the two new packages of bees due to arrive sometime in the next several weeks.

The really great news is both of our existing hives are apparently well. Amazingly, Hive Orange, one of the two original hives we started off with in April 2007, has survived yet again and is going strong, with plenty of honey and, it appears from my views through the observation window, plenty of bees. This is with very little intervention and no chemical treatments, ever.

I can't take credit for any of this as the beekeeper, especially since last year, due to some difficult personal circumstances, I did almost no colony "management" in the spring, summer, or fall. Aside from reducing the hive entrances in winter and adding a layer of insulation to the top of each hive and the area behind the false backs, I did little to support or interfere with the bees' natural processes. This has been my general approach overall, but it certainly reached new peaks (or lows) of nonintervention last year. And yet the bees survived. Perhaps there's a message in that.


Matthew said...

I've been checking in on a feral hive in Green-Wood, and they seem to be doing well, too, without the least help. Except maybe for some gardeners past (bulbs) and present. Of course, the hive entrance is about 9 feet up, so I'm not that close, but most recently it was a cool, windy day, and the entrance was jumping. http://matthewwills.com/

Gerry Gomez Pearlberg said...

Great to know there's at least one feral (wild? independent? freewheeling?) hive in that wonderful cemetery. Next time you're watching with binoculars, see if the bees are bringing in pollen (vs. robbing out a dead hive for leftover honey). And please report back!