Saturday, April 20, 2013

The newbies on the block

Last week I got some new bees, a package from Wyoming. Last year's bees swarmed and the hive never recovered. I was rather worried about this batch; the delivery was rather earlier than I would have liked, followed by a week of bitter cold and snow. Unlike a swarm, package bees don't have the opportunity to stuff themselves with honey before their journey, so their resources were thin. Basically, just the sugar water I placed in a feeder inside the hive. I need to track down a source of clean, untreated honey I can feed them with. Sugar water will do in a pinch, but it's not optimal.

Still, the weather warmed up yesterday and I came home to find bees hovering around the hive entrance, and they had drained the feeder. So that's a good sign. And they are finding the few flowers blooming.

More snow is on the way Monday.


  1. Don't panic. The squirrely weather this year is probably confusing them. Keep feeding them the sugar water.
    I don't know about honey but I'm sure we have lots of it here in California and if you Google something like "organic honey for sale" I'm sure that you will find a source. Read up though. They may not want honey from another hive. I'm not sure about these things.

  2. Hi Kitt!
    Long time no see. Spring has not quite sprung yet in your place, has it?
    What a long wait for a warmer weather.....

  3. Thanks, farmlady! Bees are happy to have honey from any source (they try to rob each other's hives all the time), but the trick is finding honey that 1) is organic and 2) has not been heated. Most commercially available honey has been pasteurized, which makes it unsuitable. I'm going to check the local beekeeping groups to see if anyone has some they'd like to sell.

    Hi Blue! Long time no see, indeed. I've been bad about posting ... I end up posting on Facebook a lot because it's easier. And my new job keeps me so busy that I don't spend a lot of time looking at other blogs. I hope you are well! Spring is surely well underway where you are.