We had an unusual harsh winter here. First it was warm until mid January, than temperatures dropped sharply. Bees stopped brooding altogether. After a couple of warm spring days, bees recover from the cold spell.

Compared to last year, the same time, there were more bees in the hives last year. Less bees this year. Due to the prolonged winter. The bees did stop brooding during the cold spells, so mostly eggs in the hive. There will be a decline in bees until start of May, the population will build up late, so swarming will be late, too. Start of June or so.

First pollen and brood. Just small patches, lots of eggs though. The queen just started laying just a few days ago, when temperatures rised.

As one can see, no worries about pulling combs for inspections. Simply put the box upside down, loose the sides of the combs with a sharp knife or hive tool, box back into original position and then loose the nail of the topbar and slowly push the topbar left and right, before lifting it. Do not try to lift honey combs just brood combs. Honey combs can be cut out for harvesting if capped.

Spring - finally!

Surreal - the blossom of Coltsfood.

First bumbles!

Bees go for Scilla.


Osmia cornuta.

Fighting over a blossom.

Nice lucky snapshot - cleaning of tongue during flight.

Blue pollen collected from the Scilla.