The Good News and the Bad News

Sunshine and warmth were the good news today. I had begun to wonder if the dandelion bloom would amount to anything, but I saw some respectable patches of yellow today. We’ll hope the progress continues and the bees find some nourishment and vigor.

The bad news? Alex and I broke down with the flatbed at about 11:00 a.m. this morning.

We went to fetch the last couple of pallets from a bee yard we lost to a family that bought the land and plan a house about 100 feet away from the bees’ location. I don’t blame them for not wanting bees that close to their new home. They apparently have children as well, and most people have no clue about how to get along with bees on a day to day basis. Unfortunately, we are on quite a streak with losing yards and needing to relocate.

Back to the bad truck business. All spring I’ve been driving the half-ton 4×4 to get around in the snow, mud, and wet grass. The 4×2 flatbed doesn’t handle those conditions with any grace at all. The last time I drove the flatbed was the day I got it stuck, but today everything dried out and I wanted to get those bees to their new home…..I told the family in March that I would try to get them out by the beginning of April. The bees made it to the new location, but the truck died a couple of miles from home. A sudden loss of power followed by a knock in the engine signaled our new dilemma. Barring a miracle repair, it looks like truck shopping just moved to the top of the agenda.

We’ve also sold off the bulk of our MN Hygienic queens. Splitting hit a wall, so about half of the MN Hygienics went to people calling for queens. Now we have a few of the MN queens scattered hither and thither instead of having large numbers installed in a number of yards. Marla has shown that hygienic colonies are less hygienic if mixed with large numbers of non-hygienic colonies. So that evaluation is basically off the list, and AFB remains as much a concern for us as ever. The situation would be brighter if the hygienics came before the Carniolans, but the sequence of arrival did not cooperate.

Here is some of that lovely orange pollen…..

 

And just for fun, here is what happens when the robbing gets out of hand….bees all over everything

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