Sunday, September 27, 2009

Where is the Honey?

I have been busy with what little spare time I have building a new honey/well house (I will talk about in a later post) and so I'm about three weeks late in harvesting some honey. I didn't expect to get much this year as I started with only one hive and it swarmed this spring. I captured two swarms this year so hope to begin next year with three hives. When I inspected the old hive I found yellow-jackets and bald-faced hornets attacking the hive (they have been particularly numerous this year).

There were about three pounds of bees left and the bottom two boxes were empty except for a few guard bees. I reduced the hive down from six to three boxes and found no capped honey frames. Bald faced hornets had been killing and eating the honey bees and the yellow jackets were stealing the honey.

The honey bees were gathering nectar and pollen and all the drones had been kicked out ,but no honey for me this year.

I also found very little brood ( baby bees ) cells but this is often normal in the fall as the hive gets ready for winter.

A picture of one of the frames with only a few bees left on it.
It looks like I will be feeding the bees this year instead of them feeding me!


  1. Where is the honey? Why YOU are my honey Mr. Bee-keeper! ( Good thing we saved some honey from last year)Your wife...

  2. The wasps here have been finding their way in-to my screened in porch I have resorted to spray..

  3. Awww Man! KN reported last week that she figured out why God made flies and mosquitos ~ to feed the frogs and fish. Then I said " Yes, but what about fleas? What are they for? And now I'd like to ask - what the heck were yellow jackets created for? I know, I know, to remind us there is sin in the world. Honey covered sin.

  4. Do you mean wasps when you say yellow jackets? In England we don't have that name. If you do, then I can tell you we have had an awful lot of wasps this year! I saw a programme on TV which said that the Australians have not suffered a lack of bees lately, like the rest of us. What is your theory for their demise? I love reading your Blog and following the story of your bees.
    Blessings, Star

  5. O! I wish we could come on over with some of our tiny little girls to build up your hive again and a jar or two of the "good stuff!".

    Our three hives are sitting in the paddock all alone without so much as a look in! but they are doing well and working hard now spring has arrived.

    When my husband is feeling up to it we will go and see how they are doing.


  6. Star, Yes yellow-jackets are wasps. We have to kinds here the ones that build the big paper nests and ones that live in the ground. Both kinds love to hang around picnics and barbecues. I believe that CCD is caused by a combination of things (mites, pesticides, etc).
    Thanks everyone for your comments!!
    The Beekeeper

  7. I just learned from the food network that the best remedy for a bee sting is to put raw honey directly on it and the honey draws out the venom.

  8. Wow this is neat, I have never seen this done only on television and ya know some shows are just hyped for t.v. love the pictures, great blog.

    Have a wonderful week

    .•:*¨¨*:•.Blessings*¨2 U 4¨**¨¨*the holidays .•:*¨¨*:•.