Today we moved the hive stands from under the trees to nearer the Bee Barn and closer to each other. They will now get more sun, especially early in the morning and hopefully will be more active than they were under the trees. The general temperature of the hives should improve now, summer and winter and I'm more hopeful now of better outcomes and better overwintering. But the bees will let us know in due course.
Whilst we have been doing this we have had 2 maintenance days - Jenni and Trish came to the first and Annie and Karl to the second and Mick of course. All our brood boxes and supers are now ready for the new season, all the feeders are cleaned and ready for action and the Nucs have been prepared too. So when we get started, we should have everything we need. Depending on the strength of the brood, hive by hive, we'd like to create some Nucs for growing on and also prepare some fresh comb for future use. We'll do this either by Bailey frame changes or by using a brood as a super and letting the bees draw the new comb out. Either way it is important to keep the comb fresh as it is less likely to harbour disease.
Any swarms we hive this year will go straight onto new foundation and will be fed after 2 days so they use all the honey they gorged on before swarming to make comb. Again disease prevention.
What the coming week hold out for us is anyone's guess, but one thing is for sure, we can't let leave them alone! Don't think they will be carrying COVID19 though.