October is here and winter preps are almost completed. With so many colonies now the varroa treatments took a little longer. We used Api-Bioxal as a trickle method on our 460 nucs and we will use Api-Bioxal with a the Gas-Vap for the main hives next week.
So a quick update on whats been happening with us. I am really pleased to say that Sian is staying with us full time to work directly with the bees and head up our queen rearing next year. With so many nucs to look after Sian is going to have her work cut out for her… We are currently looking for a new apprentice, its a 3 year scheme, the frame work is fantastic and includes a trip to New Zealand for a 12 week placement 🙂
We have taken the plunge and brought a new truck, this is now my everyday run around!
We have a new site with the most gorgeous views and are hopeful it will do well for honey next year.
The time has come to look at your roofs, if you have shallow roofs on your colonies it may be wise to change them to deep roofs, not only does it mean you can feed fondant without an eke, they are also heavier so less likely to be blown off in the winter winds. Before thinking about fondant make sure you feed syrup, again a deep roof means no need for an eke. The bees are actively bringing in lots of ivy the moment, made obvious by the bright yellow pollen donning entrances, this does look quite orange once stored in cells. However we are trying to discourage this as they find it harder to break down the ivy honey in the spring and this in turn can unknowingly cause starvation as when you heft you may be tricked into thinking they still have plenty of edible stores!
Last little check, if you are leaving a super of honey for your bees remember to remove the queen excluder. We always put our supers under the brood box and then in the spring we move them back ontop at the same time as putting the queen excluder back on. This way the queen won’t lay in the super!