Where did winter go?

Wow it’s swarming season already with quite a few swarms spotted in the last few weeks…and technically its still winter.

So if you haven’t checked your hive now is the time to have a look in the brood box and see whats going on with a view to minimising swarms. Its also a good time to do one of your quarterly disease checks.

So once you get a day over about 18C dust off the smoker crack the lid and have a look.

You are looking to see if they have enough room to store honey (you may need to harvest) and also to make sure they have about 5 full frames of honey or equivalent to last Spring.

Once your into the brood box you need to check every frame for signs of AFB (The DPI has excellent resources to help identify this) and generally have a look at the laying pattern of the queen to assess if she is going ok. Look for eggs, pollen stores and capped brood.

If you find a queen cell you can consider splitting the hive to prevent swarming, or just let them swarm and catch the swarm when they do.

If all is well then put the hive back together and have a cup of tea, time to marvel at the wonder of bees and their hive.

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