Breaking Cluster

2012 beekeeping season

The bees broke cluster today. When the mercury inched above 45 degrees I noticed a few carniolans poking their heads out of the top entrance. A half hour later there were hundreds of bees circling in the air taking their cleansing flights and removing their dead sisters from the hive.

pollen patty

When I removed the inner cover I found six frames full of healthy bees with honey to spare. It’s been an easy winter for them, and it looks like they have plenty of honey left to eat until the first blooms in April/May. I set a pollen patty on the top box to stimulate egg laying so the brood will be hatched and ready to go when flowers start showing up.
honeybees breaking cluster in early March

Hundreds of dead bees littered the slushy ground as the surviving workers cleaned out the hive.

Honeybees clustering March 2012

I’ve been putting my ear to the brood boxes every couple weeks to listen for the buzzing cluster that tells me the hive is still alive. Seeing them so healthy really lifted my spirits. Hopefully they’ll have a great spring!

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One Response to Breaking Cluster

  1. al pal says:

    when does my apprenticeship resume??

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