Showing posts with label privet. Show all posts
Showing posts with label privet. Show all posts

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Privet Hedges in Bloom

This week the privet hedges which border the eastern frontier of Spike Acres have been in bloom. The hedges continue in front of Number 3, resume across the road at Number 5 and persevere intermittently along the road on both sides. There's a lot of it. And just about all of it is currently untrimmed leaving a feast of blossom for our bees.

A very short journey to the privet hedge at Number 5

The BeesofSpike flyers are doing a steadfast job on it at the moment.
It is certainly one of the shortest journeys of their foraging year and the lovely smell of privet is now emanating from a very busy Hive Number 2.

Thursday, 2 July 2015

34.9*C in the shade

It was the hottest day of the year yesterday.
By quite a distance.
On my first visit to the apiary at 9am the temperature had already climbed to 26.5*C and the beelines had been supporting heavy traffic for hours.
The privet that they were returning with has been out for a few days now and the hive is starting to smell of it.
There's an inspection due for tomorrow so we can see whether they've started stashing it in that top box yet.

As the morning wore on it very quickly became Abroad Hot.
So after a quick look at the varroa tray, which looked very healthy (zero varroa and zero evidence of wax moth), I decided to leave the tray out for a while to help the flow of air in the hive.
Also, I realised that I still had a half entrance reducer in place covering the RHS of their entrance.
Quickly I suited up, removed the tape holding the reducer in place, prised it out of the grooves and away from the hive.
It looked like there must have been a pretty sizeable proportion of bees leaning against it because a big bloom of the little fellers hoofed out through the now empty space and got interested in me for a while before quickly realising that, actually, having a bigger front doorway was, in this heat, a vast improvement and got straight back to business.

Apart from the heat, for the colony it was pretty much business as usual all day.
At 8pm it was still 32*C and there were still flyers returning. There was also quite a gathering out on the landing board; it was a bit like a bee beach party.

8pm, still 32*C, out on the deck

By 10.30pm the temperature had dropped only to 28.8*C and it was dark. The foragers had stopped flying but the hive was still active. A large group of bees were still out on the landing board and the noise of 1000s of tiny wings beating inside the hive to try and bring the temperature down was significantly loud.

All Night Party

Hopefully it won't be quite so hot tomorrow and perhaps they'll find the newly filled water source at the back of Spike Acres soon. If they do, that should help them keep the temperature down.