I finally made it back to check the nucleus hives at Deadman Creek, and I was thrilled to find robust hives enjoying a good pollen and nectar flow, all thanks to the generous rain we had earlier this month. The bee brush was in widespread bloom and the air was filled with its sweet fragrance that reminded me of the smell of the honeysuckle nectar that my brother and I would “harvest” and drink when we were very small children in Houston. Not sure my mother ever knew about that. You can see evidence of the honey flow in the new, white combs on the lid of this hive, and on the frame of fresh honeycomb, partially filled with honey, that the bees built in place of the hive feeder that I forgot to put in a few weeks back. Nothing quite like eating fresh honey filled honeycomb right out of the hive on a beautiful fall afternoon.
Evidence of the pollen flow is in this frame that is filled wall-to-wall with bees and brood. I know from this year’s drought that bees, no matter what and how much you feed them, will not produce abundant brood and plentiful new bees without a steady flow of pollen into the hive. I know that a hive with a new queen and frames that look like this will have no problem making through the winter. But just to be sure, I am going to do one more round of mite treatments while our weather is still mild.