I took a different avenue with my Beekeeping in 2022. You could say it is a “Lazy” approach. I like to say it is a more natural approach.
Most beekeepers are told to “split” hives in the spring. I did that “routine” for several years and decided that I would change things up.
In Spring of 2022 I decided not to split the hives….but instead “I Let Them Swarm”!!
I have blogged about how to split hives in other previous blogs. Please go look for those if you are interested in the process and reason for splitting hives. Obviously, it is done when the hive is too full of bees.
I collected about 12 swarms from 3 hives during the period of early March through the end of April, 2022?!?! How does that math work? I question each hive swarming 3 times, but that is a possibility.
My other explanation is that previous years, if a hive swarmed and I was not able to catch it, it would find a home in a tree in the nearby woods. It could be swarms from those hives.
In any case, I ended up with a lot more hives than I has started with in the beginning of 2022. Those hives have flourished and have become strong hives. You wish for a strong hive when you split, but it does not always turn out that way.
So my “laziness” in not wanting to put all that effort into splitting the hive and the bees doing it themselves, turned out well for me.
I now have eight (8) hives. One failed and I sold a few. That’s five (5) more hives than I had.
I also did not go into my hives much through the year. I mentored a group and went into the hives when I taught the mentor group, but other wise I just watch activity at the entrance. From my observation, a busy hive bringing in pollen, has a queen. If activity decreases, then I check things out.
Bees are pretty self sufficient. Beekeepers fuss over them too much.
Don’t get me wrong, I like going into and working with my bees, but each time you go into a hive, it sets them back several days. Moving frames, breaking seals and just flat out interrupting their perfectly timed work.
I respect the work that they do and I leave them to their Bee-ness!!
2022 Has been a successful year for me and my bees.
I think that I will continue to be a Lazy Beekeeper. Gives me more time to plant the flowers that they Love!!