Honeyflow ended early
My Mesquite flow is almost always from the middle of April until the middle of July. But this season, for the first time in at least eight years, the Mesquite flow ended yesterday.
Right now there is a dearth of nectar and pollen, I am hoping the Summer rains come soon and that they are plentiful - otherwise I might have to start feeding to keep my bees alive.
How did you determine it so abruptly stopped? I wish to be more astute in this regard. There is so much to learn about nature and it's effect on the bees.
I had several clues:
1) Mesquite trees are very common to our area, my Nuc yard is even located under the shade of a very large one, which I pruned to create the area beneath it, where the Nucs are located. The Mesquite flowers are easy to see, even when driving past the trees. The younger, producing inflorescences are much lighter in color, but none are to be seen, presently.
2) I have a short row of sweet corn planted adjacent to the Nuc yard and the bees have begun harvesting corn pollen. Activity at the entrances shows very little or no Mesquite pollen coming in.
3) Bees have begun robbing from honey frames left exposed during inspections.
Later this afternoon I will be checking the Mesquite trees between here and my other Apiary, to see how widespread the "shutdown" is.