Beekeeping Journal

This is the second full hive treatment with oxalic acid to combat mites. Normally I would do a third but not sure - the mite levels are likely within acceptable levels now.  Bear in mind that I had rhubarb leaves in the hives already prior to two doses of acid and my smoker contains rhubarb leaves. The bees have been exposed to steady levels of oxalic. I'll evaluate next week. Thus far, the hives seem to be doing well with no immediately evident negative impacts of treatment to the hives.

It's been hot - in the mid 90's and the bees have been bearding during the day and night. Added ventilation to the tops of the hives.

Successfully did an oxalic acid vapor treatment of both hives. This is best done when there is no brood or honey supers. I do have brood but I did it now as I missed the window of opportunity earlier. I will do another followup treatment in a week or so to catch other emerging brood. After that, I'll wait until just before winter when the queen isn't laying. No real issues or lessons learned, except maybe to have a real clock out there instead of a cell phone. Or a kitchen timer type of thing.

Did a full hive inspection of both hives. Both are looking great as the bees have drawn out comb in the top super and have loaded up the bottom supers. Added a bruised, fresh rhubarb leaf between supers in each hive to help control varroa mites.

Both hives looking great. While originally C seemed the strongest, A is better developed and has noticeably more traffic coming and going. But both doing well. Added second super to each.

Leading up to this inspection, I seriously feared that Hive C was almost dead. I didn't see a lot of activity and I thought I saw LOTS of dead bees when peering in through the opening. In fact, it turns out this hive is VERY healthy. What I was seeing was good burr comb built from the bottom of the frames. That comb was covered in bees that were basically motionless as the temps where cold and they were busy doing whatever bees do. Such a relief. This is my fourth year as a beek - you'd think I would have known better and saved myself some sleepless nights.

Two packages from Stedman's bees in Silverdale. 

New foundation so letting them air out until my packages arrive in April.

It's still early but I have one set up now and another will be by this weekend.

Added foam panels insulation around beehive, keeping Vivaldi board ventilation open at the top. Have been noticing very little activity at the hive, which has been a bit concerning. Nights are getting cold and the hive is in shade most of the day now ... did see about ten bees flying about the opening yesterday during a short sunny period.

Getting ready for winter... Tipped the hive forward a bit too ahead of the rainy season. All I need to do is prepare fondant and put some burlap sacks in the Vibaldi board. Honey super is heavy but not as heavy as I had hoped....