Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Bee Installation - Success So Far

I got two new hives this year, and did the installation on Saturday.
Trees N Bees - Auburn, WA - Package Bee Delivery
I ordered my packages of bees from my friends at Trees N Bees in Auburn, WA.  They had between 4 and 5 million bees in this delivery, and there were a lot of folks excited to pick up their bees.

I helped out a bit, and then headed back to the ranch for the install.  The weather was not cooperating much in Washington State.  We've had the coldest April on record, but there was a bit of a sun break and the temps were in the high 40's - low 50's... so I went ahead with the install.

It's a pretty straight forward process.  You need to get the bees and the Queen into their new box.  You take the Queen cage out, remove the cork that's keeping her locked in, put a mini marshmallow in the hole, and attach the cage between two frames.  Then you just shake the bees out of the shipping box into the hive box.

The girls will eat the marshmallow in about a day or so releasing the Queen.  That gives the bees enough time to become familiar with the pheromones of this Queen and accept her as their Queen.

You then come back in three days and make sure the Queen is out of the cage.  I just did that this morning and I got two empty Queen cages... nice.

Now, I'll go back in this weekend and make sure she's in there laying eggs.  Once you verify egg laying - you have a successful install.

Here are some more pics from the install.