The Beekeeping Year - May
This month sees the start of foraging in earnest and also the start of swarming.
At the start of the month insert three (3) new frames in the brood box for the bees to draw out. If there is little sign of a nectar flow, give a single feed of syrup to help the bees draw out the frames. Stimulative feeding is done to encourage the Queen to lay more eggs. This is mainly done to bring the colony up to a large foraging force but feeding syrup in large quantities to stimulate laying is not recommended.
In Scotland we can get low tempratures late into the Spring and when brood starts to exceed the number of bees to look after them there is unnecessary stress on the colony.
Add a queen excluder and the first honey super on top of the brood box. As the season progresses inspect the hive weekly to see that there is enough super room and for swarming preparations. Check for Queen cells. When Queen cells are built they are usually to be found along the lower edge of the combs in the brood chamber
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