Package installation


Wednesday evening April 15, 2015 we installed one package from AWS Bees around 7:30 pm. There were around 10-12 people present to watch. We installed the package in the blue hive pictured here. We had leveled it the day before, so that the natural comb would be built straight in the frames. We put five frames of drawn comb in the bottom box so that the queen would choose to go down there and begin laying. We used a coffee can with sugar water to feed right now because the dandelions are not yet blooming and will probably be another week or two. We placed the sugar water in the far corner on top of the bars, so that if it leaks (and it was a little) it would not drown the bees. We pulled out the sugar water can and removed the queen cage. Then we shook about half the bees into the hive, with an empty deep box on top to make "sides" to contain the bees and the queen. Then, I removed the cork and direct-released the queen down into the hive. We shook her out of her cage and we saw her among the bees for a few seconds, then she went down. That is what we wanted to see. I shook some more bees inside, then shook the rest out in front of the hive. They slowly began marching up the hive stand. They were cold, so they were moving slowly. We had previously put in an entrance reducer because we knew that there are two overwintered hives on either side and we didn't want them fighting for the sugar water in there. We closed it up and left it. I will re-check in about a week, or wait until our first scheduled field day on May 2, 2015.

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