A good friend, Mark, helped the other day to heft the lighter hives and make sure everything is secure.
Jon is unable to drive until after Christmas and so we are very grateful for all of the support we have received from local beekeepers. Because of this help we have been able to turn a crisis into a positive, which is setting the flavour for 2014.
Our plans for this coming year include designing improved course-ware for Queen-rearing courses, experimenting with radical Queen rearing techniques and running 2 Queen colonies. Our Honey production will be increased by bringing 2 more honey apiaries on stream in the Spring, and the infrastructure is almost complete.
We set double brood colonies with a sister nucleus colony alongside to chainsaw sealed brood frames from the nucleus to the main colony early in the season. This process is reversed later with full frames of honey to bolster the depleted Nucleus.
All of the nucleus boxes are sealed and cleaned and ready for the start of the action and genetic stock has been ordered, to provide other gene streams to prevent any inbreeding in 2014.