Reprinted with kind permission from: emsnews.wordpress.com
Bee Club last night. I didn't stay for a cuppa, but I learnt HEAPS about preparing for winter which will become increasingly relevant in the next few weeks. Bee folks are lovely folks, that's for sure. And apparently, Mr Bredbo Valley View Farm was there also. I wonder who you are???!!! Wow - we were almost outed from blogworld.
I am pleased to report the lacuna Sabbath has been reinstated. This morning Mr Duck Herder and I headed up to Black Mountain for a run which was just lovely. If I ever had a spiritual home, it would be Black Mountain. I love it up there. I miss not being able to run up there every day.
I wanted so much to open the hive today, but it was cloudy and threatening to storm. Instead I spent some time wiring up some new frames for Queen Atalia. Eric's cool trick which I have stolen is to melt the foundation wax onto the frames with a 12 volt battery charger. Quick, cheap and BRILLIANT. Now the charger has a dual role. How permaculture.
Serendipitously at about 5.00pm just as the sun came out, Eric turned up to check on the bees. We opened the hive and well, one thing led to another and we put all the new full frames into the brooder, took out the short frames and put them up in the Manley super along with my newly constructed Manley Frames. No gear, just a smoker. At one stage I was holding a frame full of bees and brood and honey with bees crawling all over my hands and arms. They were so sweet and nice and soft and calm. AMAZING. Sometimes I had to remind myself to breath and be CALM.
They have been busy. Most of the capped honey is gone, but there is new nectar being put down, and new comb being made (below the short frames) and some drawn out from the foundation frames. Lots of eggs, lots of brood, lots of pollen. Lots more bees. They have made great progress.
I am most impressed with the comb that has been built below the short frames. One day I would like to experiment with the Warre Hive system and top bar frames or foundationless frames. I think some of the ideas could be adapted to standard langstroth hive components. So much to learn. I think with all the terrible problems folks in the US have been having with Colony Collapse Syndrome and Varroa, there has been a renaissance of more natural beekeeping. It is all so interesting. There are heaps of interesting blogs out there on more natural beekeeping.
Anyhoo, I had better get back to defrosting the freezer.
Goodnight my queen.