Last Wednesday I got a second package of bees. I had yet another new experience when installing this package. This time when I was trying to remove the feeding can full of sugar syrup I couldn’t get it free. I thought it was just heavy and that I did not have a good grip on it, but eventually I was able to wiggle it out of the package. By the time I finally got it wiggled free I noticed that the queen cage was sitting at the bottom of the pile of bees and there was a 3×3 patch of comb attached to it. They must have built a chunk of comb between the can and queen cage which explains how difficult it was to remove the can of syrup. Talk about industrious! All they had available to them was the tiny can of sugar syrup and they chose to start building comb! I decided to name this queen Ingrid. No real reason – but I just looked up the name meaning and it seems appropriate because it is Norse for “Ing is beautiful” and Ing is the name of a Germanic fertility God.
Today (a week after installing the second package) I checked on both hives. Betsy’s hive was thriving. No sighting of Betsy, but there was lots of evidence – eggs, brood and larvae in all stages. They had about 6 frames full of honey and brood. If things go well I plan to add a second box next week.
Ingrid’s hive was bustling as well. She was released and accepted (not surprising considering she had already managed to get them to build comb). There were eggs in the hive and I actually caught her laying (I felt a little bad disturbing her). And also not a surprise they had attached comb everywhere there was empty space. I moved the hive top feeder from Betsy’s hive to Ingrid’s hive and added a quart of sugar syrup.
We’ll see how things go next week.
Oh! Since it is the last day of May I’d like to announce the May give-away! I’ll send a couple lucky readers a hair elastic bracelet that they can wear to look stylish while having a hair tie at the ready to tie up your hair in the heat of summer. All you need to do to win is post a comment below about your favorite insect and why (bonus points if you can guess what my favorite bug is)! Be sure to post a comment by June 20th in order to win!