4 days in, with questions on expansion and inspection
Wednesday evening I brought home my first hive: single deep 10 frame, well populated with gentle bees and a three month old queen.
I have left them alone and they are coming in with pollen, and I have seen drones returning in the afternoons.
1. Re: First Inspection
I am anxious to inspect to check the queen, we had a very bumpy road to go up leading to my place. But I thought it best to wait until there would also be a chance of finding eggs, in case I did not see the queen. So, I am thinking that would be Monday?? I meet with my mentor tomorrow and wonder if I should check them this afternoon or early tomorrow (if it clears up--its raining now) so I can report back to him (cant reach him by phone). Or just wait and do nothing until we talk tomorrow.
2. Re: My extra boxes, and expanding.
I also have a 10 frame empty single deep and a medium, both with new wax foundation.
My long term plan is to have 5-6 hives here on my 7 acres, and more up the road about three miles.
Originally, my plan was to work this first single hive, and bought the extra deep in the event I can can catch a swarm. I was going to have the bees draw out some comb to make it a more attractive new home for a swarm....I have access to a trap and lure and a place where there have been swarms in past years.
3. Or...forget the swarm idea???
I could just expand this hive with the medium as a super (with or without the excluder) and use the deep as a second hive if and when this is ready to split.
I would like to make the best use of my extra two boxes and do right by my bees.....I am thinking a few more mediums boxes with foundationless frames would be a good investment for me. We have been doing queen rearing at the beeyard so I think I will be able to keep expanding if all goes well.
Thanks in advance for any input. I know I need more equipment but want to stretch what I have and not get overextended too quickly. I also need to get to the beeyard more and the computer a LOT less because I am overwhelmed with information and lacking an instinct and confidence about what to do....
I appreciate this forum so much, particularly the help for newcomers. thank you so much!!