Last night I went to my second bee club meeting of the Tupelo Honey Association. As usual I learned a lot. Two men who are members created the better beetle blaster traps and I won one of them as a door prize. I had to ask what do I do with it?....LOL Boy will I be glad when I don't feel like a total idiot.
A fellow from the department of agriculture was there and I found out all of our bees has to be registered in the state of Florida even if you are only doing it as a hobby so now I have all that paperwork to do and will have to have my bees inspected on a regular basis.
Today Papa Bear and I checked the hives to see if the queens had been released. It was the first chance we've had since we have had rain off and on this week. I got the smoker going with only a little trouble with the first attempt. The first hive had released the queen from her cage. I checked 3 out of the 10 frames and never did see her but comb was being drawn and I think I saw a few eggs so I assume she is in there and doing her job. It was starting to cloud up and I wanted to get to the next hive so I didn't examine things as long as I would have liked to.
The queen was still in her cage in the second hive. There were bees all over the cage but none looked to be trying to sting her so I brushed the bees off and used a wood screw to remove the cork on the opposite end of the candy plug. I barely touched the cork with the screw and the cork fell inside the cage and I almost stabbed the queen with the wood screw! I got her out and into the hive without murdering her.
We did put the bucket feeders I ordered a few weeks ago into the top of an empty brood box on both hives . I put 1/2 gallon of syrup into each feeder. Each hive has been going through a quart of syrup every two days since we put them in the hives. This will give me an extra day or so without disturbing the bees too much. I would have put a couple of gallons into each hive but I don't know how long the syrup would last in the heat before it ferments.
Unfortunately for me and the bees I will have to disturb them again tomorrow. I forgot when I was in the hives that I was suppose to remove the clumps of wax the bees had made on the frames beside the queen cages. I guess I need to make a checklist of everything I need to do while I am tending the hives. Seems like I always forget something. I am still amazed at how gentle the bees seem to be and I made it though using the smoker, opening the hives and not getting stung which I think is amazing.
I did find out that I do want a frame holder and the clamp you use to pull up the frame. I ordered those today.