Entries from September 2019

Monday, 2nd September 2019
I went to the hive this evening to top up the feeder, and it was bone dry. I'd made up just over a litre of 2:1 syrup for them. As I poured it slowly into the feeder, twenty or so bees suddenly appeared in the cup to eat more. They're hungry. …
Wednesday, 4th September 2019
Some more 2:1 syrup for the bees. The feeder was again empty, so it looks like we're going to feed them every other day at least. B poured the syrup in very carefully so as not to drown the bees that happened to be in the cup, with his sister C looking on. …
Friday, 6th September 2019
Another evening visit to feed the bees with B and C, another empty feeder. B carefully tipped in the syrup and we spent five minutes before going looking at the pollen on the bees' corbiculae. …
Sunday, 8th September 2019: The all clear?
It's beginning to get autumnal now, with a distinct bite in the air. Conditions were very pleasant for a meeting of all four of us — me, Dave, D and B — in a new, more relaxed and tranquil inspection approach. …
Tuesday, 10th September 2019: Asian Hornet Week
On the walk back from the apiary, I realised that I'm a day late in reporting, gentle reader (no, I only have one reader), that it's Asian Hornet Week. …
Wednesday, 11th September 2019: Caught out by a mimic
We met this visitor to our apiary this morning calmly sitting on the gate. It looked bigger than the honey bees, and, not knowing much about insects, I thought it might be a hornet. Checking a few pictures, I was unsure whether it was an Asian or boring old European hornet. …
Thursday, 12th September 2019: Germany bans glyphosate
With the abundance of updates about feeding getting a bit samey, I've adopted a bit of a newsroom slant for September. With this in mind, there's another bit of news that I'm over a week late in reporting. …
Sunday, 15th September 2019: Like a virgin
Today's inspection was the first I've ever done entirely by myself. Far from B being someone who watches what we're doing, I realised today that he's a truly helpful assistant, because I found the whole process much harder without him. …
Tuesday, 17th September 2019
Another sunset feed, with perhaps 250ml of syrup still in the feeder, a possible slow-down in feeding. And even with a stinking cold, I noticed my habit of using packaging materials in the smoker is giving the smoke an unpleasant, acrid smell. …
Friday, 20th September 2019
The bees are taking less and less syrup. Today's feed was a top-up of the feeder, leaving some syrup left over in the jar. Tomorrow's inspection should be enlightening. …
Saturday, 21st September 2019: Wall-to-wall sugar haul
Well, I wanted a mild autumn, and if today's weather lasts, oh, I don't know, another month, I should think we'll be all right. With bee suits made from polycotton, today's 24°C heat felt a bit much for some, but it turned out to be another surprising inspection. …
Thursday, 26th September 2019
I dropped by to give the bees a top-up of syrup. …
Sunday, 29th September 2019: Long live the queen!
Well, I think that must have been the best inspection so far. It's been raining for a few days, but this evening we had a reasonable temperature for an inspection, and no rain, but a fairly strong wind. We also had a lovely autumn sunset, and even the smoker worked reliably. …