Adventures in Beekeeping: Bee Larvae

Posted by on June 25, 2013 at 10:49 am.

Earlier this morning, I realized that I hadn’t looked inside my hive since I went inside the Warre hive five days ago. Which is fine by me, I want the bees to do their own thing. I observe them daily, I’m just not inside their hive.

Since I know the queen has been busily laying eggs, I decided to check to see how they were faring. While opening up the top box of my Warre hive,  I noticed a large amount of honeybees inside the first box. They were nurse bee and they were busily tending to the larvae. Oh that’s a good sign! The nurse bees were milling about feeding the larvae. I must say it was quite fascinating to watch them.

I did notice that two combs (in the top box) were merged at the end and so I took a butter knife to gently pry them apart. I have pictures, I’ll try to post them later today.

In one of my earlier posts, I mentioned that the honeybees have found a great nectar source, so they have been ignoring the feeders.  I did add water to one of the feeders so they can have a steady supply of water, but I won’t be adding any more sugar water.

Angry Honeybees

While checking the comb I banged one of the bars that the comb is attached too. Whoops, sorry honeybees! Naturally they didn’t like that and I had a small swarm of highly pissed honeybees checking me out to see what the heck I was doing.  I was safe inside my bee suit, and after a bit of bouncing on my head and a few squirts from my spray bottle that contained water,  they were fine. They went about grooming themselves. I looked at them a bit more before closing up the Warre hive and trudging back to the house.

Fun Fact:  Did you know that the honeybee queen has a smooth stinger? Unlike the worker honeybees that have a barbed stinger, so they’ll die after they sting, she won’t die since her stinger is smooth. You might wonder why she’s different? The newly emerged queen kills other queens (by stinging them) before they come out of their queen cells. Remember, there’s normally only one queen per hive.

 

Edited to add: I’ve posted a few of the photos I took of our honeybees this morning.

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