It looks like May was the dullest in the last 5 years and following on from a sunny end to April interfered with our queen rearing plans with the chosen colony throwing Queen Cells. Our objective to re-introduce 2 14×12 hives has just about been achieved. The withdrawl of the deep and shallow brood chambers being outstanding. Although not ‘by the book’ we currently have 3 mating nuclei from our chosen queen rearing hive. June will prove if the resultant virgin queens mated and returned successfully. A secondary hive has been identified as a further source of queens. After a ‘False Alarm’ the apiary was given the all-clear of notifiable diseases.
The larvae pupating now will provide the bulk of the foragers for the main flow in July. Hopefully the notorious ‘June Gap’ will not be lengthy this year. The weather has held back some May forage and hopefully the sun will keep the July forage on time. Swarm prevention and where necessary control will continue through June as a lack of foraging may result in congested hives. The Oil Seed Rape honey will need to be removed and processed early in the month before it granulates.
It would be nice to see more of our seasoned members at the apiary meetings. Why not pop along for a visit one Sunday in June? Meet the new beekeepers, take a look at the apiary and maybe consider taking on the role of Apiary Trustee for next year.
– Brad Davis, Fred Whetnall, Richard Williams