Tuesday October 9th, 2001
We now have nearly all the supers in and the extracting is almost done. Having done the work by hand, we have been able to sort the combs out and improve the organization in the supers. We still have quite a bit of granulation in the supers from last year, but it is well distributed and should be easily eliminated next year. One thing that would help a lot is to start extracting a bit earlier. Nonetheless, it is hard to get that starting date right, since one year the flow may be early and another, it may be late.
We have had a very dry August and some areas definitely suffered from the drought.
Bert came for supper.
Monday October 8th, 2001
I did some paperwork and fed one nearby yard that had used its syrup.
Sunday October 7th, 2001
Israel and his friend, Roz came out for a visit. He has just returned from an assignment in Tanzania.
Saturday October 6th, 2001
Friday October 5th, 2001
I spent the day visiting yards to check weights and feed and to remove the mite drop boards that were put in when the Apistan® strip was installed several days ago. Weights seem pretty good and the feed is being taken well. I found no varroa in most yards and very few varroa on the boards in several others. I found a total of only 10 mites on the 4 boards in the worst yard. 6 were in one hive of the four.
Our boards are piece of coroplast® the size of a sheet of foundation. We coat them with Pam cooking spray and protect them with a sheet of 6 mesh hardware cloth. We only test a few random hives in each yard to see if there is a high level of mites or not. Last year we found the occasional hive with a hundred mites or more, but this year we treated in the spring with a single strip in the centre of the cluster in the top box. That is the technique we are using now. Judging by the low counts so far, I think we can put off treating the rest of the hives until spring.
The drum shown on the upper right is a special feed drum designed to deny access by wildlife and livestock to the sugar syrup inside. Animals find sugar attractive and can be killed by drinking large amounts of syrup.
The lower photo shows a drum that has been emptied by the bees and shows how few bees are lost if the straw is the correct kind and is placed properly in the drums.
Our syrup is not medicated. We use 67% sucrose spring and fall.
Thursday October 4th, 2001
There were a lot of small things that kept me home in the morning, but I got out to the yards to feed around one. In spite of the forecast and radio reports saying that the high was 7° C, the bees were actively collecting feed. I was relieved to see that the hives are getting nicely up to weight. I think we can get by without buying another load of syrup this fall.
I returned at 5:30 and we to Three Hills for a candidates meeting with the ratepayers of our county. Pretty well the entire county is fed up with the current council, so attendance was good. I was impressed with the qualifications of those running and the civility and respect that everyone displayed towards all the candidates.
Low zero. High 15.
Wednesday October 3rd, 2001
I'm back at work today. I'm sticking to office work. The weather is cool and will be for several days, so there is no rush to get the feed out, but I'll have to get started again tomorrow.
Low 1. High 15.
Tuesday October 2nd, 2001
This morning I awoke at 6, had breakfast with Gordon and Leny and then headed to Niagara Falls in my red Neon.
I spent the day there walking and taking pictures. Around noon, I walked across the bridge over the gorge to the USA and found that, rather than just waving me through as they usually have in the past, the agent carefully scrutinized my passport and plane ticket. Then she had me sit and wait while she did some sort of computer search before handing me back my papers and allowing me to proceed.
I then returned to my car and drove to Pearson. The car got 39 MPG (Imperial measure) which is not bad, but nothing like the 50 MPG I got in the Echo I had some time back.
I caught and earlier flight, but after two hours of sitting and taxiing out and to the runway and back we were moved to another plane due to some engine problems and I finally arrived home only a half hour or so earlier than I had originally scheduled.
Monday October 1st, 2001, Last year on this date
It was an excellent meal.
We had a good visit then turned in.