It’s important to do a honeybee hive inspection after installing a new queen – to make sure she’s been released into the hive and that the other honeybees have accepted her.
Before inspecting the hives, the first thing to do is get the hive smoker going. It’s really important to make sure the smoker is working well – wouldn’t want the fire going out mid-inspection. Then make sure to put on all the proper protective gear.
Carefully removing the top feeder to start the hive inspection.
Open up the hive, making sure that the smoker is in action (in the bottom left corner of the photo).
Use the smoker to calm the bees before going in, and remove the queen’s box.
Here the queen’s box is being removed, to determine whether she’s been released into the hive yet.
Confirm the queen’s box is empty and that her worker’s successfully ate their way through the “candy” plug in the end of the box releasing her into the hive!
Inspect the hive and check for eggs to see if the queen is laying. This inspection was only a few days after installing the queen so there were no eggs yet. But, the bees have built burr comb (the white looking stuff beneath the bees) on one frame, which needs to be removed.
Preparing to remove the burr comb.
Here’s what the burr comb looks like after being removed from the frames.
After finishing inspection of the frames and bees, the frames go back in.
Then the top feeder goes on.
First inspection successfully complete! Everything looking good, the bees are busy bringing back supplies, so there’s a good chance the queen has survived and we’ll see eggs at the next inspection.