Removing the Queen Cages
4/19/05 Today I removed the queen cages from one of the hives. I had removed the cage
from the other hive on Sunday (4/17/05), it decided to move into the top box with the food
(This was a huge mess). The
hives appear to be doing well. Plenty of bees covering about 4 frames. I need to go in an
replace/repair the foundation on two of the frames. It is beginning to sag in the corner.
Luckily the bees aren't using these frames yet so that makes it easy. I will get in there in
the next day or two and replace the frames with new foundation and see if I can fix the ones
that have sagged.
Hiving the Packages
The bees came in on Wednesday 4/13/05. I was excited to get them. I expected a call
from UPS to say that they would be delivered today, but I got no call. Instead there they
were on the front porch when I got home from work. They didn't seem to mind at all. All the
bees were clustered around the syrup can and the queen. I sprayed a little water on the cage in
case they were thristy they didn't seem to mind, but they didn't seem to drink it either. I figure
I will hive them tomorrow evening around 7:00 pm. Below are some pictures of getting the
packages and making food for them.
Here is the supplies I used to make pollen patties. The yellow stuff in the package on the right is
pollen, the white flour stuff behind it is pollen substitute. In the big bowl is 1:1 sugar syrup.
Okay here are the bees. Because it was suppose to get down to freezing tonight we moved them indoors
and put them on a towel in our little breakfast nook. They should be snug there till I install them
Okay I hived the bees on Thursday 4/15/05. It was a great experience I had
bees all over me. I put on a veil
and had long pants and long sleeve shirt. I didn't wear gloves so I could work with them
easier. I only got stung once. A bee got on my sleeve and when I went to move the folds
of the fabric pinched her and she stung me. Didn't hurt too bad, the worse part is the
itchy feeling that follows.
Here I am setting up to hive the bees. I am about to remove the can of sugar syrup and the
queen cage from the package before I shake the bees into the hive.
Notice I have pulled four frames out of the hive body. In this picture I am placing the queen's
cage between two frames. The cage will hang from the top bars of the frames. A
marshmello into the hole in the queens cage so the bees can release her later.
Here I am shaking the bees out of the package into the space where the four frames were removed
from the hive. There are roughly 9,000 bees in this package.
The bees had been hived for just over three days. I continued to check on how much sugar syrup
they had been consuming. I saw that I needed to replace the sugar bag in both hives. However, in
one hive the whole colony had moved up into the feeder area. This meant 9,000 bees to deal with.
Besides being a headache it was also a mess, because they had started to build comb all of the
place and the queen had even begun laying eggs. So I decided to shake the bees out of the feeder
area and change the way I feed the bees so they couldn't get into the upper super.
Here is a picture of the top cover and inner cover after I removed the feeder. There are some
9,000 bees not happy to be moved in that picture plus the queen is there (which is not a good
Another picture of the inner cover on which the food for the bees is placed. In the front
right corner is the pollen patty, front left corner is a zip-lock baggie with sugar syrup,
and in the back left corner is the sugar syrup can that came with the package. In the can
the bees decided to build most of their hive so far. The queen is probably in there in this
Here I am about to remove the queen cage from the hive. It is hung from the top of the frame
by the metal clip. I have also remove several frames to allow me to brush the bees back into the
hive from the feeder parts.
Here I have brushed the hive back into the main body and replaced most of the frames. Then it dawns
on me I better check on the queen. We found her outside of the hive. It took us three times to find
her because she kept flying off before we got her back in the hive.
This is a picture of the sugar syrup can that came with the package. The bees had decided to start
their new hive here and thus all the comb. There are a few eggs in the comb as well as some stored
sugar syrup. We will melt this down later and turn it into candles.