Brushy Mountain Bee Farm's Resources for Beekeeping, Candle Making, and Soap Making

Bee-Ginner's Guide
Back to Basics
Candy's Corner


Candy's Corner

Hi, Everyone!

The saga continues. I have not been in my hives in about a month. I know you all are gasping for air from hearing this but life at the Bee Farm is at full speed. I have just had my fingers crossed and been hoping for the best. I knew by the activity at the front of each hive that things weren’t dire.

My son went with me to the hives on Saturday to help. I was so excited! We started inspecting the first hive and the bees were really nasty, which my son did not like. This was his second time in a hive and it was a little overwhelming for him. I was teasing him and told him not to throw my queen on the ground like he did last time. He is a hormonal teenager and teasing him was not the thing to do. So we got into an argument and by the time I focused back on the open hive, we had a robbing frenzy going on. He was really not in the mood now to work the bees or be anywhere near me so we closed the hive up, reduced the front entrance to the smallest opening and walked away.

I gladly went back on Sunday by myself and started my inspection with the other hive. This hive consists of six medium supers; three for brood and three for honey. The first box I inspected was full of honey, which is what I expected. The next box consisted of honey, capped brood, larva, and fresh eggs. That was NOT what I was expecting. I did not freak out because I figured that the virgin queen (which turns out was not) that I found last time had made it back into the hive before I closed it up and I had just trapped her in the upper boxes when I put the queen excluder on. I continued my inspection with the next box down and had the same scenario but I did find the queen in this box. I caged her in my queen catcher and placed the queen catcher on the top of the frames I was inspecting.

I removed the queen excluder and moved on down to the next box, laying the queen catcher with the queen in it on top of those frames. That box was full of honey, so I moved on down to the next box carrying the queen catcher down to that box. Well as soon as I laid the queen catcher down on the frames the bees covered it. At first I thought, “Awe, how sweet, they missed her”. The more I watched, it became clear it was not love they were sharing but hate instead. They were trying to ball her. I shook the bees off and laid it back down, I had to inspect the box. This box was also full of fresh eggs, larva, and frames packed with brood. I found another queen!! She was beautiful! I knew it was time to close this hive up and do something with the poor queen that was getting her butt kicked in the queen catcher. I did not have the equipment to split the hive (I know I work at a beekeeping supply company and should have everything I need, but life does not work like that for me) so I just put the hive back together like it was with the queen excluder separating the two queens.

I’m not sure if the one queen is going to make it after the way she was treated but I wished her luck and walked away. My plan is to try to get the hives split sometime in the near future. I will fill you in next time!!!

See you at the Bee Farm!