Please have them tested and let us know what the outcome is. You have plenty of time to collect a sample. I have been real close to purchasing bees from R. Weaver but have held off for now. Living in AHB country we need all the help we can get to keep them gentle. I have 3 hives started this year from a nuc and packages picked up in LA and they are so gentle I feel silly wearing protection. However, I am certainly fearful of supercedure in this area of the country. Looks like this thread is good for at least another month as we watch the progress of your "taming of the hive".
I would hate to sound critical but it looked to me like you were getting a bit too strong with the smoke in your first video. They work better for me when I just waft it over them a couple of times and not blast them with it. Just a thought.
Thanks for the videos, bee-nuts. I always enjoy watching other beeks doing inspections since I don't have any mentors. If I didn't have my other gentle hive - if this was my fist and only - I would have given up on beekeeping by now! And I don't give up easily :-)
I thought the same thing as you did Chuck. When I was smoking my hot hive what I considered "heavy" I don't think I used that much smoke. Bee-nuts, it looked like you were using the smoke to brush the bees aside so you wouldn't squish them before you put the tops back on. I use a bee brush but inevitably some get squished anyway. Beautiful hive and beautiful bees !!!
I will collect my sample to send to A&M on Sat when I retrieve the empty queen cage. I don't want to collect them now while I am still getting them to accept their new queen. By Sat she will have been in there a week and hopefully they have made their mind about her.
I need about 50 bees in a jar and then I have to soak them in alcohol. Reminds me of when I was a kid. I use to take a mason jar and go up to the ligustrum bushes and collect bees. I had holes in the lid and loved to listen to them buzz. I always released them after a couple of hours - didn't want them to die. Never got stung, either, but I wasn't near their hive.