During my hive inspection yesterday, I pulled out the plywood beneath the screened bottom board on Hive A and saw ... a whole bunch of varrao mites! Some alive, most dead. How could this be? I hived the package only three weeks ago.
Here is a short time lapse video showing the installation of two packages into our honeybee hives. This is not intended as a tutorial, just a "bird's eye view" for someone wondering what the process looks like start to finish. :)
Saturday, April 22, 2017, I hived two packages of Italian bees from Stedman's Bee Supplies in Silverdale, Washington. This will be my second season as a beekeeper.
I lost a hive last year and it was a crushing loss. I was doing everything right - so far as I know, but then there was a slow die-off. Something happened to my queen and the bees couldn't replace her in time.
My first year as a beekeeper didn't wind down to a productive, fulfilling end as I had hoped - and even come to expect along the way.
Rather, it came to an abrupt, tragic end a couple of weeks ago when I noticed no activity at the hive.
Here's a photo I got when inspecting the beehive a few days ago ... my little worker gals are busy as ... well, bees - and they are doing what they do best - producing and storing honey.
I had to relocate a bee hive today. That meant completely tearing it down, examining every frame and reassembling it only three feet away. It was a lot work! While in there, I dusted the bees with powered sugar.
Here's a photo I got while inspecting the bee hive today ... this is the top of the second deep super, with the honey super and queen excluder removed. There are a MILLION bees in there ... well, maybe not quite, but almost.
I built a hive stand for my bees today. At present, I only have one hive but plan to go up to two.