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Sunday, June 21, 2015

Split Happens

Hive split, swarm in tree

Split Happens

We experienced a couple of splits.  A large portion of the bees left the hive and swarmed on June 16.  We tried to entice them into the new hive.  The swarm was very high up in major tree branches this time and we weren't prepared to gather them up in this type of situation.

Sadly, the swarm disappeared and our new hive remains empty.  Maybe next year.

Honey dripping from the hive

Comb Split Or Drop

While watering the garden this morning, I noticed honey leaking from the bottom of the old hive.  Upon seeing that, I grabbed the camera to get a photo of the underside to quickly get a detailed look at the underside of the hive without disturbing the bees too much.

Comb separated from the top bars
It looks like a good portion of the comb dropped off of the top bars, squishing a few of the worker bees.

Looking at other beekeeper blogs, it is something that happens to all bee hives at one time or another.  It is important to get rid of the fallen comb to prevent cross comb and wild building of comb, then let the bees clean up the remaining honey.  

What is interesting is the first set of bars - the ones towards the front of the hive look fine.  The last set of bars, probably where the majority of honey is stored, is where several combs may have dropped.  We have to get in there to take a good look though.

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