Sticky Pics from McGill’s Hive

Noémie and I visited the McGill hive today to create a nucleus colony for our new queen, who will be arriving any day now. My camera got covered in honey and propolis, as I took the following photos to share with our blog followers.

This photo shows some kind of irregularity in the comb. Maybe some of our members know if this is normal or not, and if not, what is going on?

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Here’s a closer look:

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This is happy Noémie handling the hive like the expert she is. Check out the beautiful frame, with a rainbow pattern.

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It is typical for a frame to have a rainbow shape of stored nectar, pollen and brood. Usually the brood will be toward the lower part of the rainbow, and next to the brood will be pollen, then the nectar will be stored on the outer or upper part of the rainbow shape.

There was so much activity in the hive; everyone was buzzing and working. We checked for brood and found a young honey bee emerging from it’s cell, which you can see in the very center of this photo:

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The highlight of any bee hive visit is when you spot the queen bee, which you can see below. Finding the queen bee takes practice and patience. Noémie was certainly patient with me, as I kept confusing drones with the queen. (Note: Drones are bigger and darker than the worker bees. The queen is also bigger than the workers, but she is long, narrow, and lighter in color.) Our queen here looked healthy and was laying tons of great brood.

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We checked the drone frame, which the bees were busy building up. The drone frame was empty the last time we checkedo, so what you see below is what the bees built in 10 days.

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And here’s the hive once we put it back together again. The top two supers will be separated from the bottom ones and become the new hive for the new queen.

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