Spring rains have brought the spring flowers and the flow is on. Summer is fast approaching, and the Tallow flow is next in line. Swarms have been hived. Colonies have been split. Queens have been raised and introduced to their new families. Honey supers are on and some harvesting has begun. There was a good privet and clover bloom but cool nights hurt the daytime nectar flows. The rains have slowed down, temperatures are rising and the work in the apiary goes on. Here’s to a safe and plentiful harvest for all. And if it does not happen, well there is always next year.
As of May 20, 2018 I’m not too impressed with the nectar harvesting being carried out by my bees. It looked to be a good year back in March but with April I had my doubts. Lots of swarm captures and cut-outs and the splits and nucs I’d made did well. I’ve three hives at the home yard that I use to make splits and nucs and they are also doing well. But the hives in the two yards in the field just aren’t laying down the additional supers I’d hoped for. The disparity between new queens and old queens from last fall’s replacements don’t seem to show much difference in nectar returns. I’m about to retire four of them where the new queens just didn’t take hold or the old queens are failing. I often pull the old darker brood frames in such hives replace them with new foundation/frames. I carry out this procedure in the spring and fall months rather than limp through the summer or winter with weaker hives. It is easier to replace them with younger stronger hives. This is where I utilize the nucs I’d made earlier in the spring.