Shiny is better.

Monday the 4yo snapped a shot of the brood pattern on the East hive. Not bad, not bad.

I got the apiguard treatments off for the Fall.
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I was going to work on the bees a little today, but my smoker isn't ready and they were all over the place.

So I took some pictures of them hanging out. :)
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The bees in the wonderful weather we've had recently.
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Saturday I treated the two hives with Apiguard strips (apivar) for varroa mites. Two strips per five frames of brood, so basically two per deep. They're the white tabs sticking up.

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The west bee hive this morning. They seem happy enough. #🐝
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This is actually not honey color but comb color. This frame was used for brood early in the year. Once honey flow began, they repurposed it for honey -- as they should.
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16 shallow frames for harvest.
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Varroa prefer drone larvae, because drones take 24 days to grow, vs 21 days for workers. This gives them the chance to reproduce in the cell one more time than otherwise.

Like everyone, I will need to treat for varroa as soon as reasonable (next week).
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After harvesting, I poked holes in all the drone comb on my honey frames. I spotted varroa mites leaving the cells as I opened them. I cut out all the drones, and smashed any varroa I found. Somewhat surprised it was so easy to see them.
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Here's a drone emerging from his cell while I pulled frames to harvest honey this morning. More on drone comb later... He is not welcome in my hive.

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The ladies having a night on the town.

OK, I pulled the roof off their house and destroyed their stores, so they're trying to save whatever they can. Ho ho.

Hives are doing very well, lots of honey, good behavior. Killed a bunch of SHBs, of course!
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The bees are bearding, which is a good sign especially for the East hive there, which is the one I requeened a while ago. I need to inspect, but the rain is keeping me away.
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Wow! Look at the 2019 honey on the left compared to the 2020 honey on the right. Biggest factor is probably that I pulled the honey this year a few months(!) earlier in the year. Still expecting a Fall harvest later.
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"If bees are not cleaned from the floor, bees must be cleaned upon ship-ment, lest the floor becomes a slippery mess. In these conditions, the humans wear respirators. What about the bees?" #🐝
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Yesterday I inspected the bees again, quickly, but the East hive still hadn't released her queen. The bees were all over the cage, though.
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It's always disconcerting when you find a bee in your hair that has already lost its stinger!

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Saturday I'll check on them. She won't have much space, so maybe no eggs by then in any case. But to pull the cage and see if things look normal, what aggression is like.
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Stage 3 is harvesting the honey from the second deep box, which I'm waiting on an extractor for. Once the extractor arrives, I'll extract all the honey from the second deep, and return the empty frames on the bottom, to become the new primary brood box. #🐝
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Because the colony was clearly far along and needed a queen (was confirming with inspection that queen was gone), I went straight ahead and installed the new queen. The workers weren't aggressive but WERE really excited, immediately spreading her scent.
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Some of the proof of not having a queen: See that bulge just right-of-center? The comb comes outward because they're building drone comb; drones are much larger than workers.

And the workers are laying! There is ~5-day-old larva. East hive. #🐝
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You gave up too much to turn back now.