Good news from the hive this summer: our queen is alive, healthy and laying plenty of daughters (also known as worker bees). This was a relief, because as Toni explained, we need the queen to be able to lay workers. Those female bees do ALL the work, and the colony’s population will crash without them.
We also discovered about 45 - 50 pounds of honey waiting to be harvested. (If you think Washington Youth Garden honey sounds exciting, stay tuned. The Washington Youth Garden will be celebrating its 40th birthday on September 17th and we’d love for you to join us…)
The photos above show our mentor beekeeper, Toni Burnham along with several WYG staff members investigating the honey stores on the top super and brooding patters on the frames below. The capped cells are larvae: flat cells are worker bees (girls) and the protruding cells are drones (boys). Fortunately we found strong brood pattern of workers on 7.5 out of 10 frames and no evidence of swarming or hive beetles. Whew!
Three cheers for happy bees!