In the case of the Waitakere’s we seem to get excessive rain for weeks at a time. We now know the reason why the council built a water dam across the hill :).
I spent some time today checking on our hives and masking up the joins between the boxes. Last year the hive we lost had gaps between the boxes, and we feel this could have been a factor in losing that hive.
The Mokoroa hive is going great guns but are lacking any upper stores of honey. I have removed the second full sized box (which had empty frames) and replaced it with a ¾ size box with around four frames full of capped honey from our stores. Let’s hope this will be enough for the bees to over winter.
The hive has a standard flat roof and was full of moisture when I checked it, we do need to get one of our new roofs on them soon. In the meantime I have put on a small spacer with a plastic feeder below the roof to provide a small attic space for the moisture to collect in.
The other hives are all going well, from the cursory inspection. It was too cold to do a full inspection and we don’t want to break the bee’s propolis seals. The masking tape is another layer of protection, just in case the propolis isn’t enough.
The next task to do is tidy up all the empty bee hive boxes in our shed, and protect them from winter pests looking for a nice warm home. Winter is also a great time to fix up broken boxes and build new hives for next season.
Well good luck to all our girls, next inspections when the spring comes over the hill.