We were quite concerned about how our bees would over-winter this year since they did not look strong going into the winter. This was due to a combination of prolonged dry weather and an unexpected surge in mite population between early August and early September. We wintered approximately 2/3 of our hives indoors for this reason. When we moved the colonies outside, we were happy to see that our colony losses were only 15%. To build our colony numbers back up, we took splits from our stronger colonies. These splits now have 2023 queens and are already producing honey!
We started the process of rearing queens in the middle of May and will continue our weekly schedule through to early August. We are rearing both Buckfast and LVG queens.