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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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Friday, April 27, 2007

Back Doors for the Bees

Since the weather is getting hotter, it's time to consider the hive's ventilation. For air circulation through the hive, it helps to give the bees a propped top. I usually find a stick to put in between the telescoping cover and the inner cover. Today I propped the tops on all three of my hives.

In addition to providing ventilation, the propped top gives the bees a back door. I do see them using it as such - perhaps it shortens the distance to the delivery of nectar when the top box (just under the inner cover under the propped lid) is where the bees are storing honey.

I also added a new box to both Proteus and Mellona. Proteus has brood in the bottom box and the medium above that was filled with almost completely capped honey in every frame. This is the box where they made confused comb. Mostly the comb is fine now and the box is almost completely capped. I want to encourage the queen to lay in the medium, so I put a new medium between the bottom deep and the honey-filled medium.

In the interest of giving these confused bees the best possible chance of building straight comb, I used Housel positioning in my starter strips and included two full frames of small cell foundation. I also wrote the name of the hive and the number of the box on the outside of each box. Proteus now has from the bottom up: Brood Box, Box 3 - new mostly SC starter strip frames with Housel positioning, Box 1 filled with capped honey; Box 2 - foundationless frames with starter strips.

In the version of Housel positioning that I used, I did not incorporate a center frame. For understanding what I mean by Housel positioning, see this earlier post.

Meanwhile, Mellona is going gangbusters with honey making. Mellona, the Roman goddess of the bees, is obviously working on this hive. When I checked the status, Mellona has beautiful comb throughout the hive. They have fully built out all of the boxes, so I added a fourth. When I checked yesterday, Mellona had a filled brood box on the bottom; a medium that they drew out from starter strip frames that is completely filled, a shallow (actually painted for another hive) that is already filled on 8 frames with almost capped honey. I wanted to add another honey super - a shallow using Housel positioning, so I did that today. I also labeled and numbered the boxes on Mellona in the order in which they were added. Unlike Proteus, the boxes on Mellona are stacked in the order in which they were added.

I thought someone might like to see how close Proteus is to my sunporch. This picture was taken with me standing beside the other two hives looking at the back of Proteus.

And here is a picture of my grandson who spends every Friday with me, looking out of the sunporch door from the inside. This is the Dylan's-eye view of my beeyard on my deck.
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  1. Hi;

    Bee translations

    in Turkish is balarisi or ari

  2. Thanks, Halil Bilen, I added Turkish to my list on the sidebar!


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