After a REALLY busy week I realise that it is over a week since I posted ! (and this one is going to be a quickie as we get ready for another fishing trip to Cornwall)
Where did the time go?!
Much of the week has been spent outside. After the bees swarmed last week we looked through all our hives and saw that they were so strong that we had to fit supers on five hives. We have been keeping bees for over forty years and we have never had such a start to the year. I guess we will be spending a lot of time either trying to prevent the bees swarming or collecting the swarms if/when they do! With luck we should also get some honey.More importantly we should have a VERY good fruit year as the trees are covered with bees as soon as they are in blossom.
On Monday, B (shared lives guy) and D.were about to riddle some more compost for potting on some tomato plants which I hope top sell and I was about to go to the fodder rooms and collect EGD dog for "Doggy day Care" at ours and the phone rang. Our godson's bees had swarmed and he was the other side of Chesterfield on a job he couldn't leave. His sister was keeping her eye on them to see where they landed while we set off poste-haste to collect them. They landed in a very tricky place on a fence, about 12 feet from their original hive, but after some maneuvering we finally boxed them and left them there for GDS.
I know I have said this before, but to remind you, You can't just move bees a few feet, you have to move them a couple of miles or so, leave them in that site for a day or two and then move them back to the site you want them to stay, which might only be a couple of feet away from where they started.
It took us some time to gather the bees (and EGD's dog!) so we had to rush back as it was time for B. to go home. After putting our stuff away, exercising the dog, feeding the lambs etc etc we had a hasty tea and set off for the AGM of the Canal Society. On the way home we looked at our phones and there had been several missed calls from GDS. D. phoned him back and said "Hope the bees are okay, bring them over to ours if you want to move them back to your other two". "Ah! " said GDS "I've been trying to ring you to ask if it is okay for me to bring all three hives over for a couple of days while I sort my bee site out. I hope you don't mind, but I have bought them over tonight while you were out."
So that's TEN hives in our front garden at the moment! And very nice friendly bees they are too.
Yesterday, as a thank you, he bought us a trailer load of logs .. Nice!
While we were at the meeting a member asked us if we could take their four hens that they can no longer keep. "No Problem" says D. and arranged for them to be bought over the next night. We put them in a small separate house that opens onto the main run and so far so good they haven't been given too hard a time by the others (there is plenty of room) As three year old virgins, they are a little "surprised" by Hugh, the cockerel, but as he has plenty more women to see to he isn't bothering them too much while they get used to married life!
There is much more to tell, but I need to get on with some letters for the Civic Society and get the house and animals ready to leave for YD to look after while we are in Cornwall. Ooh yes, and this afternoon we are going to look at some stoves as we need to get cracking on replacing the living room fire - I'm very excited by this.
We hear that the fishing hasn't been good this year. I'll let you know when we get back.
All for now