The weather was a balmy 21℃ today and I took a trip to Berwick to check the bees in the Thermosolar hive. I was curious to see how much they had by way of stores and Varroa, as they had quite a bit of building to do when they first moved in (eight 14 x 12 frames) and they have not had any supplementary feed at any point.
Click this link here for a video of the visit.
I checked the Varroa board but there are hardly any mites – I counted 6! Ironic? Possibly, but the hive is super-insulated so perhaps this factor helps in the general control of the mite. Maybe they have such a large population, and there’s time and energy to groom each other and control imposters. There is a rack over the floor of the hive too so the bees have a couple of inches of space underneath the combs which also helps with temperature regulation.
After checking the hive and setting the second hive up for occupation, I set off to find a place for the bait hive. I can’t check the bees that frequently so I will set up some bait hives on the site. I also had a look round for any forage apart from the froth of blackthorn, and found a large patch of black horehound which had a couple of honey bees and a large queen buff-tailed bumblebee enjoying the flowers.