36 beekeepers attended our hive inspection workshop on April 26 at LCBA mentorship coordinator Gary Stelzner's apiary in Winlock. We inspected three hives - finding one queenless - then closed up hives & retreated to Gary's shop for coffee, snacks, & beekeeping Q&A when the weather got threatening... photos below!
Above, LCBA members getting ready to inspect hives; below, LCBA President Norm Switzler led the inspection. Note the blue skies - TV stations gave us the generic Olympia-to-Bellingham forecast, but Accuweather & NOAA's websites gave us a more accurate target for our zip code! We managed to look at three hives before it got too cold & windy...
Above, LCBA members watching Norm's careful frame manipulations; below, new members Dave and Jan:
Above, looking down into the hive box; below, bees groom each other on the back of Norm's suit:
Above, Michaela holds frame as a new member's son holds burr comb; below, members watching Norm prepare to scrape burr comb:
Above & below: watching bees hatch from brood frame.
Below, host & LCBA Mentorship Coordinator Gary Stelzner answers questions:
Above, LCBA members Taylor, Jerry, Sue, & Ed at Q&A session after hive inspection.
Above, a highlight of this workshop was when Michaela noticed bees hatching from a brood frame - some had not seen bees hatch out before! Above, Michaela (partially hidden) holds the frame as others look on.
Above, Norm shows the beginnings of drawn comb on an otherwise blank frame of wax foundation (drawn comb facing away from camera); below, Norm works to free a frame glued in by propolis:
Above, slowly & gently pulling a frame; below, note careful finger grip on frame, avoiding crushing bees:
Below, scraping burr comb that bees built atop frame:
Below, back inside Gary's shop, Norm shows members LCBA's observation hive, to be used in the upcoming Youth Fair. The hive accommodates 3 deep frames of bees and enables visitors to watch the queen lay eggs, newborn bees hatch out of cells, & other behavior.
Below, members Anna & Alan Sparling listen to Q&A:
Above, vigorous Q&A session lasted about an hour after we closed up hives.