An Inspector Calls (Visit 3 of 3)

As I have described in two previous posts, my apiary was 1 of 200 randomly selected in the UK to be part of an EU study to better understand colony collapse.

Previous inspections by the National Bee Unit have revealed deformed wing virus and confirmed that my bees died due to combining my hive of laying workers with my healthy colony – these workers then killed my queen and no new bees were produced.

This was the third and final visit and my two hives received a clean bill of health. No deformed, shiny or black bees. Healthy, laying queens. Healthy amount of brood. All looks set to start preparing for the Winter.

Bee Inspector Frame August 2013
Bee Inspector – Inspecting Frame – August 2013

My book keeps saying things like the “pons asinorum of beekeeping”* is to find and mark the Queen, “see that you cross it and you will be a beekeeper”. I have been wholly unsuccessful in this – until now, whereby I can claim partial success, but I cannot yet say that I have fully crossed this bridge.

The inspector spotted both my Queens and I took the opportunity to mark them (blue) – bonus. They looked pretty big.

Marked Queen
Marked Queen

I have updated my hive records and all is looking good as we prepare for Winter:

The plan is to put a second dose of Apiguard on 7th September and then feed them.

I have recently written a Beekeeping Calendar to help me remember what I should be doing and when.

* pons asinorum – “a problem that severely tests the ability of an inexperienced person” (that’s me!).

Author: Roger

regaining my sanity through beekeeping

2 thoughts on “An Inspector Calls (Visit 3 of 3)”

  1. I find it’s much easier to mark the queen if you have an assistant – someone to hold the frame and keep her in sight whilst you fumble for the queen marking cage and put it over her.

  2. Laying workers don’t have a very good concept of self preservation.

    Congratulations on your healthy hives, hope they winter over well.

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