August 1

Hive Inspections, and Our New Beekeeper


Below  you will meet our newest beekeeper Camryn Clawson.  Camryn and Inspected and worked 11 hives yesterday.  We focused on determining that the Queen was present and working, good brood patterns, looking for pests…especially hive beetles and wax moths, and honey supplies  Erin Denison had already prewarned us that we should consider feeding our hives and she is absolutely correct.  Only one hive had good stores of honey, and unless we feed that hive, the honey will be consumed.  Hopefully fall will bring new food supplies, but until then we must help nature out and feed our bees.  We began feeding all hives we inspected that were not already being fed.  I had received requests from Leigh and the Blacks to make inspections of their hives. If there are others who would like for me to complete an inspection with you or for you, please let me know.

Besides feeding, all eleven  of these hives were in good shape.  No pests were detected and the queens were doing a great job.  We treated all 11 of these hives with a gel treatment of apivar.  One of the causes of hive loss last year is believed to be due to damage done by the varroa destructor mite.  This year we will be more aggressive in our treatment.  I have a new fogging machine made specifically for beekeepers so we may better treat with oxilic acid.

Our topic at our Gaston County Beekeepers Association was the Small Hive Beetle.  I learned some new things.  I would like for us to have an evening together in the near future so we may share with one another. I keep saying we are going to do this…I promise I will.

…And now…..

Welcome to Camryn Clawson as a volunteer for the Smith Education Apiary.  Camryn selected this as her service project for her membership in the Ida Rankin Safety Patrol.  Yesterday we inspected and treated 11 hives for varroa mites and determined the strength of each hive.   Enjoy her first day with me through the photo journal below.

Mixing Sugar Water for our bees.

Discovery of Wax Moths in two of our boxes.

Close look at the destructive powers of the wax moth.

Fire is a great way to destroy these wax moths.  Twenty frames of drawn cone go to flames.  Bye Bye wax moths….and the money needed to replace these frames.

Camryn was an enthusiastic learner and wanted to learn how to do it all.  Here she is preparing to light her first smoker.

Seperating the frames and preparing for her first inspection.

The inspection begins. This her first hive and she shows no fear!

Time to feed our bees. Adding sugar water to the Black’s bees.

Time to take a look at our Top Bar Hive.

Look at this beautiful cone our bees have built.

Learning the importance of smoking our hives properly.

Easy does it. Camryn is the perfect bee keeper…slow and easy.

So many little things we must do to get ready for our bees.

Clean up at the end of the day after 7 hours of work. This girl is a born beekeeper!