I started my adventure in beekeeping two months ago, and I feel as though I have even more questions now than when I began.
I've even been dreaming about the hives and if they will survive the winter or not.
Yes, it's that bad.
Fortunately, Bill Werning of Werning Apiaries, helped calm some of my fears when he kindly volunteered via Facebook to help me inspect my hives and give me a few pointers on overwintering bees.
Bill proved to be a wealth of knowledge as we conducted the hive inspections together. He showed me how to rearrange frames in the hive to maximize comb construction, helped me better understand brood patterns and how bees use vertical space in the hive. All in all, he said the bees were very healthy with good brood patterns - great news for a beekeeper with a troubled mind.
Now, there is the unfortunate news. We will not be having a honey harvest this year.
Man was I bummed to hear that....
You see, we purchased our bees locally from Sweet Mountain Farm, located on Washington Island. As a result, we acquired our bees later in the year than most other beekeepers, who often purchase bees raised in states like Florida and California.
Our decision to purchase bees raised here in Wisconsin is obviously having short-term impacts, but our hope is that if we can get them to survive the winter, our colonies will be stronger than ever next year and should allow for an early honey harvest.
We're looking forward to sharing the event with you when that time comes!