Hutters...I am excitedly turning the real Honey Hut (my art cottage in the backyard) into something super fun/cozy/practical/I want to move into. It's going to take me a few weeks but I can't wait to share with you.
So. Earlier this week Krista made arrangements for the El Dorado Backyard Beekeepers Club to come out to her ranch and watch/inspect our hives. We met today and I have to say that in the company of such educated apiarists (who, by the way, wear NO protective bee suits at all!! So brave.) I felt incredibly well, uneducated. But anyways, so good to get guidance from such experienced beekeepers. The good news: Our bees have not swarmed or succumbed to CCD (colony collapse disorder) but are in fact thriving. One hive is healthier than the other, the less healthy hive has a bacterial disease called "European Foulbrood". Foulbrood is diagnosed when larve are not capped, and are instead unprotected by the hive. There are 2 types of Foulbrood: American and European. If diagnosed American, hives need to be burned immediately. Yeeaahh. A huge loss financially/physically/ agriculturally. Luckily we have European Foulbrood. Yay us! Typically beekeepers use an antibiotic to procure the success of the hive but we are choosing to not medicate, hoping the hive rights itself. According to
"Bee Bruce" (the EDBB specialist) our hive is thriving regardless of this Foulbrood and so we are cheering them on naturally. Other good news: We have confirmation to extract twice in the near future! Once in early May and once in early July. And boy oh boy is this good news...never have you met a more greedy hobbyist than a beekeeper! Below you'll see what "Bee Jim" calls "Monkey Chain". HA! That term just did me in...too funny.