My bees are coming along well in the 3 weeks since i got them. I have some questions/obervations though.
1. The bees have totally sealed the 4 screened ventilation holes in the cover. Will the unseal this when spring comes or when needed for ventilation? Should I just leave it alone?
2. I notice about 50% of the pollen being brought in this week is white and 50% the typical yellow colour. I live on the northside of Brisbane and was wondering if anyone could tell me what the white pollen might be from? Unfortunately the tea trees at my place have finished a productive nectar flow but foraging continues to be strong and bee numbers very high.
3. The Apithor SHB traps seem to be working with very low numbers of live beetles present but quite a few dead ones in the trap and being carried out by the bees. I see them (SHB) flying around the hive every afternoon around sunset trying to get in. I recall reading I should treat the ground around the hive but can't remember what with. Can anyone advise? I am going to trial an oil trap bottom board next week and see what result that gives.
4. In Birsbane will the bee numbers continue to go up in Winter, stay the same or go down? I am not sure what to expect.
5. Does anyone feed patties or similar to bees in Winter in Brisbane? I doubt they would need it but not sure given the emphasis given to this in the USA but of course they have a very different climate in much of the USA. I'd like to keep numbers storng as possible.
6. When will the bees stop building comb or will they continue into winter? How many frames of honey should they need for winter for a strong hive?
Well that's about it for now. All things considered I am very pleased with the progress in the last few weeks. They have drawn out 2 frames of foundation and starting to fill with honey so I have placed a second super on top with a baffle board and replaced 2 honey frames I took out and put in the freezer and added one more foundation between them. The bee population has significantly increased although very strong to start with and there are a lot of bees under the lid when I lift it. The honey frames are much heavier than I expected and it was a thrill seeing them filled and looking so pristine!