2012 09 09 Baghdad is listing to starboard

Dad called to say that he was doing something over by the hive at his place, and somehow it was tipping over. I got there later that afternoon, and it wasn't as bad as I expected, the box had tipped, but was still intact. We found a couple of pavers to put under the frame it is on, and sorted it out. Had a peep in to see what they had been up to all winter...

before the straightening...


The girls were still working, despite the tilt.
Not very busy, but we found plenty of honey inside.

Under the hive mat. No sign of the condensation that I'd found in the Northcote hives.
Some mould , though. I looked this up, quite OK to have a bit of mould in there over winter, however better to keep it ventilated to keep the condensation down. Bees have it good in Australia, even in Melbourne, mild winters, but sometimes lots of rain. No snow, at least.

I had a quick look through a few frames, there's actually a fair bit of honey in there, scattered throughout the top two boxes, but not consolidated intoa particular area (other than more in the middle, as usual)

Down past the Queen Excluder (QX)

I only had a look at one frame down in the brood box, it was kinda late in the day and cooling down rapidly.
Plenty of brood, though, and solid. I'll have to make sure I have a proper look next time.

Some of the girl having a union meeting, voting on whether to attack me or not.
They were very placid, surprising, I thought, considering they hadn't seen me for months, their home was listing to starboard heavily, and it was getting cold...

The improved setup, with the steel frame ( ithink its an old sewing machine stand) sitting on pavers, so the legs cant sink into the ground.

No stings, though one did have a good go, as I was packing up.

2012 09 01 Balinese bees

Took a short break to Bali last week, fantastic place. First time there, I had no idea it was so beautiful and relaxed.

Saw quite a few bees, and a couple of blue banded bees, (which also appear in the warmer parts of Australia).

Apparently people keep bees here at the top of trees, but we didn't see any such hives. Honey is very expensive, even for non tourists, I think. Apparently most honey sold there is diluted by 50% or more. 

I tried to find some of their honey over there, and got some from a coffee plantation shop, out on the country. Delicious, very floral and runny. Trouble was, when we landed in Perth the customs people took it away from me. They don't have European foul-brood in West Australia, so they don't let any foreign honey in. Pissed me off at the time (it was hard to get, and expensive!), but fair enough.
I've brought honey in direct to Melbourne from Europe, declared it, no probs, but they are tougher over in W.A.

I guess no Indonesian  honey for my reference library, just some brochures. 

So, this blog post is really boring.... here's a photo of my friend the monkey.