This blog explains how I keep bees. It works for me, it might not work for you. Use my methods at your own risk. Always wear protective clothing and use a smoker when working bees.

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Sunday, February 13, 2011

A beekeeper checked his hive today

This is normal, dead bees in front, brown snow from cleansing flights. It is not nosema or the hive dying.
John checked his colony today, this is what he saw.
I did look into the hive this weekend. Large (about 5 frames wide) ball of bees and still 4 or 5 frames of capped honey in the top deep. Didn’t intrude more. No condensation or frost on top. The sponges I have on top to absorb moisture are dead dry.

I slid up the metal mouse guard at the bottom entrance and started to scrape out dead bees away from the hive opening. There were lots of active live bees being pulled out as well so I quit. There were some bees flying and lots of evidence of “cleansing flights” ( I love that euphemism…) on the snow. See the pictures attached. I figure that on days like today (Sunday) if I have bees at the hive bottom entrance and at the top in a ball then they have pretty general access to whatever food is in the hive when temperatures allow.