Sunday, August 21, 2016

Opened the boxes to check if I can harvest honey

August 13

I smoked the small hive B and put the queen excluder between the top and 2nd box. This was Saturday morning between 9:15 and 9:30 am.

I took the large hive A apart but there was brood in the top 3 boxes as well as capped pollen so I removed the bottom box and put the feeder box on Hive A. So now there are 4 boxes. I think I'll try to remove the top box/honey in September. One issue is that my top boxes (which I intend to remove for the winter/harvest some honey) are the ones with escape holes, so if I take them off, I'll have to drill holes in the "next" top boxes :)

There seems to be plenty of honey throughout the combs but there isn't one solid box of honey.

I used the smoker, the string technique and wedges to separate the boxes and I put a big piece of cardboard down to prevent "robbing."  I set the boxes on the cardboard so if any honey would spill, I could remove it from the scene.

August 14

Sunday I took the top box off of the small hive but when I examined it, about 4 of the 8 combs which I removed there was way too much brood, so I replaced the combs exactly where I had removed them from and put the feeders on Hive B.

I took the large hive apart but ended up putting it back together because there was a lot of brood and larvae. I pulled some larvae and none of them had any mites on them. But I have not done a formal mite check/count.  I put the feeder back on Hive A

August 21

Checked the feeders, and will need to fill them tomorrow. Carpenter ants are in the sawdust of hive B and as I was trying to brush them away, an irritated worker stung me in the left cheek!!! Methylprednisolone and Diphenhydramine begins :(

August 22

Sunday, I checked the feeders and topped up the jars on Hive B, the one jar on Hive A was empty so I filled it but the second jar was 2/3 full so I left it.  I wore my veil today!! Angry little workers this time of year.

This is the top box of Hive B before I took it apart for inspection:
 Mark took these pictures (explaining the finger) but this shows a comb with some capped honey, capped pollen, nectar and larvae.

 Here is a close up of the comb:

Every larva I look at, looks like this, no mites the way I see them photo'ed from other hives:

Here's the video as I removed the top bar/comb to look at it: