What is happening in your hive in the Summertime?
Long summer days with extended daylight helps the Queen’s egg production to be at a peak. The hive will maintain a large brood nest, resulting in growing bee numbers. Please inspect your hives in 3-4 week intervals for health issues.
You can collect the honey surplus if available. Only if required, provide bees with space to build and collect (adding another honey super). Watch weather forecasts for heat waves.
What to do in a heat wave?
High temperatures can be dangerous for the bees. Although bees like it warm, sustained overheating can kill brood and potentially weaken the colony.
If you live in a hot area, think about providing shade for your hives. You can add ventilation holes in the rim of your lid and ensure your bottom board provides adequate ventilation.
Keep a close eye on your hives and look for signs of overheating such as increased activity, bearding and melted honey or wax. Consider reducing the number of frames per super during summer to increase airflow in the hive.
If there is no natural water source near your hives, add a shallow container of water to keep bees hydrated – include rocks or stones to make it easy for bees to land and drink.
All the best with your bees! Merry Christmas.
See you in the New Year.
Phil Marshall, Adelaide Bee Sales.