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I've been keeping this blog for all of my beekeeping years and I am beginning my 19th year of beekeeping in April 2024. Now there are more than 1300 posts on this blog. Please use the search bar below to search the blog for other posts on a subject in which you are interested. You can also click on the "label" at the end of a post and all posts with that label will show up. At the very bottom of this page is a list of all the labels I've used.

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I began this blog to chronicle my beekeeping experiences. I have read lots of beekeeping books, but nothing takes the place of either hands-on experience with an experienced beekeeper or good pictures of the process. I want people to have a clearer picture of what to expect in their beekeeping so I post pictures and write about my beekeeping saga here.Master Beekeeper Enjoy with me as I learn and grow as a beekeeper.

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Thursday, March 01, 2007

The Value of a Camera During Inspection

I've been so glad that I've had a camera when I've inspected the hives. Often I find something unexpected when I look at the photos after the inspection. And I'm not a photographer - just a point and shoot person with a basic camera.

During the inspection, I am wearing a veil, operating my smoker (when I remember that I have it) and trying to move slowly and not drop anything. It's a major challenge to do all of that. So I see what is on the frames but I don't really SEE details until the photos download to my computer.

For example, I had a large picture of a frame of honey and when I cropped one section of it, I found a great view of a bee drinking honey beside a small hive beetle:

When I had robbers in the beehives, I made a robber screen. It confused the bees and they were in the middle of a nectar flow. The foraging bees began flying under the hives, passing nectar to the bees in the hive through the screened bottom board. I couldn't see this, but the camera with its flash exposed the activity for me to see later. I simply held the camera under the hive and snapped without looking through the viewfinder.

I routinely took frames out of the hive and hung them on the rack I attached to the side of the hive. Then I took a picture of the activity. In the picture below, you see a frame of brood with bees all over it.

When I zoomed in on a small section of the picture, you can see the "C" shaped larvae in open cells.
Yesterday when I discovered that the bees in Destin had all died, I was relieved to find some brood in my other hive, Bermuda. When I came in to my computer I looked closely at the photo, examining what seemed like a spotty brood pattern:
In the cropped close-up you can actually see the grain of rice shaped eggs in each empty cell, proving that the queen in that hive is doing well. During the inspection I only saw the empty cells but during the photo inspection later, the eggs are quite evident. If you can't see them, click on the picture below to enlarge it and you'll see eggs in most of the empty cells.

1 comment:

  1. Great photos Linda! I always spend time at the computer after the inspection too. You can see so much more and take the time to look close.

    So sorry to hear about your lost hive.


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