Interesting note. Today walking by the hives in the mist, the LS hive was extremely active, flying their first test flights. Forgot that today was the due day for emergence. Looks like this hive may have a good chance for survival as there were a lot of them. We'll see come fall whether I have to combine the two smaller hives into one good one or not. Stopped by my favorite summer tree today while walking the dogs and just the top branches are flowered out so far, but the bees are busy working it. The cutting I took last year didn't make it so I'll have to get another one later in the week and try again. I stopped to admire a neighbors garden and she came over to talk and pet the dogs, took me out back to see more gardens and my bees were busy working the liatris. She gave me a couple of new plants to lure in hummingbirds, will have to look them up when they mature. I planted them in the garden under the butterfly bush next to the screened porch which is my favorite spot to lounge. She says the hummingbirds really like them, can't wait.
As I watched the bees come home this evening my thoughts began to wander. Everyone knows that the real bee dance is when a bee returns to the hive and runs around in circles wildly telling everyone in there just where the best plants of the day are. I have another idea. As I watched a bee hit the landing board, it began the infamous dance, trying to entice the others, or was it. I wonder. Everyday new bees hit the air for the very first time and in their enthusiasm, come back so excited that they don't even deposit their load, but just spin like crazy in front of whomever will watch, saying "this was the most exciting day of my life, and you won't believe what happened". As I watched, other bees came in and without a shred of concern, just knocked over the dancing bee and shoved her out of the way to get inside and make a deposit, guess the excitement is gone quite quickly. Later
After all my yard work this morning, I smoked the package hive and pulled the comb box off to see how it is progressing. About half full, so I'll leave it till fall. Pulled the top brood box to check for honey storage. It was not as full as I would have liked for removal, and there were still a few of the lower part of the bars which contained brood, so I guess it will have to stay for the winter unless they get inspired this fall season. All hives still bringing in pollen, but I don't have the slightest idea from where. Guess I'll take the dogs for a stroll and check out the neighborhood. Still some white clover around for them to gather nectar and the other flowers around are still going strong, with the Hosta just now flowering. My plans for selling honey this summer are all but dashed for the time being.
By the way, I used some of the new, non-chemical herbal spray for sending the bees down, it stings when you get it on your hands so wear gloves. It sent the bees below right away, but they refused to leave the box due to the brood. I do give it a good recommendation. Later
Just got another hit on how White Oak is not conforming to good business practices. Seems like he ordered 2 nuc's that were never delivered and after many e-mails had to get his money back through PayPal. That got me thinking so I ran a search and found a site where people who have been ripped off can spill there guts out. Seems a person bought honey from WOA on line and never received it in the mail as promised. Made many complaints and after three months of lies, finally tried to get his money back through PayPal, but they said the time period for claims had run out, so now he's out $48 bucks. Should have read it here first.
Next Saturday is honey day. The package hive is working the comb super really hard and has filled the top box. It has dropped down into the third box, so they should be good for the winter. The strong swarm has just started building into the second box, but has 3/4 of the top box full of honey so that one I'll let go. The other 2 swarm hive's are doing better since I installed the new queens, hope they build up enough for winter without feeding, but will if I have to. We'll see when that time comes around. Later