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Summer dearth

 
Cj Sloane
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Activity has dropped dramatically in front of my hive. This is one of those times I'm really glad I have a window. The hive is full of bees but not much new comb is being built. I assume this is the summer dearth. I still see lots of bumble bees around. Don't they go thru a dearth too?

With a Peronne hive I guess there's not much to do. The entrance is already quite small. What would be a sign I need to feed?
 
Cj Sloane
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Is there some axiom that when you post a question on the net the answer becomes self evident? Or that circumstances will change?

I went outside a few minutes after posting and stood in front of a big bull thistle which was buzzing with insects. A few different types of bumblebees, a dragonfly, mystery bugs and as I was walking away I spotted a honeybee, and then another. I checked out the hive and activity was back up.

A week of dearth doesn't seem like much but many of the posts I saw online were posted at the end of July.
 
tel jetson
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it really depends on your local flora and weather. around here, we can usually count on a couple hot months without much or any rain each summer, and sometimes upwards of three months. so we usually get a pretty good spell without much nectar coming in. but we just had a week of pretty serious rain in the middle of July, so instead of the dearth that I generally expect about now, there's quite a bit of nectar and pollen coming in.

I typically focus my planting for nectar on things that will flower July through September so I can offer some small relief for what are typically pretty lean times.
 
Martin Miljkovic
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Hi,
what is the pollen situation?
 
Cj Sloane
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Still seeing pollen coming in. Comb production has slowed for sure but 30% of the Peronne is completely filled top to bottom . It's still tempting to take off the canvas blocking their access to the honey supers but I haven't done it yet.

The thing that's throwing me a bit is I'm seeing sooooooo many bumble bees - at least 5 different species.

The other thing is I just visited my cousin about 150 miles south of me and I saw tons of honey bees at his place. They don't have a hive & neither do any of the neighbors. They were all over the anise hyssop (I brought some home to plant) and another purple wildflower I couldn't ID. He's supposedly allergic but is talking about planting for bees anyway and maybe having an un-managed hive. I see a Peronne in his future.

The bees are getting plenty to eat, I'm just not seeing them as I walk around, not compared to the bumble bees anyway.
 
Charles Tarnard
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Mint and oregano are what the bees are going crazy on here and now. I don't have a hive, though.
 
Cj Sloane
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Cj Verde wrote:...and another purple wildflower I couldn't ID.


Can anyone ID this NY state wildflower, in bloom now (early August)


Or this one which has flowers like a thistle but leaves more like a Burdock:
 
Dave Lodge
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First one is Spotted Knapweed.
 
Cj Sloane
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Excellent! Another black sheep plant that honey bees love.
 
Cj Sloane
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So I'm still not seeing a ton of honey bees as I walk around my land. Lots of bumblebees. There are zillions of wildflowers and should be plenty of nectar because we had the 3rd wettest July on record. It was still great for the bees & growies because it conveniently rained at night, mostly.

So today I heard a honey bee buzzing and I finally spotted it and where do you think it landed? With all the Bull thistle, Jewelweed, smartweed, and wildflowers galore it landed on... cow poop! DH said, I think your honey is going to taste like shit, and then of course he bust out laughing.

I feel like when you get your kid a great present and he spends the next 2 hours playing with the box!
 
David Livingston
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Second plant looks like a burdock because its a burdock Looks like the ones here in France anyway.
As for the Bees I would trust them to find the flowers they want although they may not be the flowers you want them to go to
Have they water nearby ?

David
 
Cj Sloane
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It doesn't look like the Burdock I've seen which has leaves as big as Rhubarb.

As for water, the hive is on an island in my pond which is probably about 150 yards long. Plus, there is a small stream running thru the property.
 
tel jetson
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without knowing much about your local flora or agriculture, my guess would be that they found a big patch of something they particularly fancy someplace you haven't walked yet. remember that they'll happily travel four miles to forage.
 
Matu Collins
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I agree that the second plant looks like burdock. Sometimes the leaves are small.
 
Cj Sloane
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Cj Verde wrote:Activity has dropped dramatically in front of my hive.


It turns out that my bees tend to sleep in later than me! I generally check on them after feeding the livestock at around 9 and there'd be just a few bees at the entrance. It turns out that activity cranks up later in the day. I'm not sure if it's because the bee hut is shaded and/or too forested or because the nights have been cold, dropping to the mid 50's often. Tomorrow night's low is supposed to be 48°F!
 
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