Monday, April 26, 2010

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

10 to 1

in the morning..  

Thursday, April 15, 2010

big plans

after a hive realizes it's queenless, the workers get busy building emergency queen cells:

raises questions: are these the same as swarm cells? will all these princesses swarm off with part of the hive? or does first-to-hatch kill the rest?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

secondary swarms

crazy; Monday's large swarm spit out 3 secondary swarms yesterday, neatly landing on the back fence:

I didn't know what to make of it, and then I found this Wikipedia comment:

As many as 21 virgin queens have been counted in a single large swarm.

so my current theory is that the original large swarm contain four or more princesses, three of which left the next day in after-swarms of their own.

Here you can see a the virgin queen of one swarm being tended to, after I sprayed the whole bunch with water to weigh them down and make it more difficult to fly:

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

kill the drones, save the hive

I'm experimenting with a new mite management technique; centralizing drone brood on a specially sized frame (drone cells are distinctly larger than worker cells), and then freezing it.

it's like a trap; varroa mites love the longer incubation period of drone brood, so by concentrating it on a single frame, the theory is that you can dramatically reduce the mite population in a hive by freezing the entire frame once it's capped.

here you can see the drone comb almost drawn:

and fully capped, ready for the freezer:

generally, honeybees produce an excess of drones, so the death of such a large portion of the drone population is not necessarily a loss for the least in terms of honey production.

urban swarms

ah geez...they didn't!

quite a large swarm (~10,000 bees I guess) landed on the neighbour's garage roof, and decided it was their new home:

francois and I finally got the bulk of the bees in the box, and then gradually the rest joined them:

Monday, April 5, 2010

7d bee viddy

click the link..
shot by tom marchand and jonathan dy.  edited by tom marchand


please your queen

photo by jonathan dy

brutality of fact

bringing out the dead

she lost her wings

filtering the unfit

in devon's words, "there's no pension plan in the hive."
photos by jonathan dy

memories of warmer days

random interactions

lens landing

making time for small talk

dancing on nails



photos by jonathan dy