Some of my favourite photos

Monday, 14 April 2014

Honey Bees

My friend Archie's family keeps bees and yesterday they invited me around while they were checking their bee hive.
This process is called 'Going through the bees' and used to monitor that the colony is healthy by seeing if there is enough honey and pollen, confirm whether the Queen is healthy, to see if there are any Queen cups, to check the drones are healthy and there are no parasites.

The protective suits will help prevent the bees from stinging, although the bees can still sting through the suits if they wanted to.
They wear different gloves to check each hive so that they don't spread dieases between hives.

Firstly they smoked the hive gently to calm the bees. They are stood out of the line of flight.

Here you can see some larvae.

Each frame was lifted out and examined. They couldn't find the Queen but the eggs and drones were healthy which means the Queen is probably healthy too.

In this photo you can see the Queen cup, this is  the beginning of a cell where the Queen may lay a fertile egg to raise another Queen.

We could see Oil Seed Rape pollen on the frames.

At the moment there is only enough honey for the hive but later in the year they will be able to harvest some honey.

After throughly checking the hive it all seemed to be healthy and there are no parasites.

Thank you to Sonia for wearing a protective suit and taking the close up photos.

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