Yesterday it was time to transfer the bees to their new hive.
DH had to go and do it on his own, I was at home waiting for the new cooker to be delivered and installed. It was a much slower process than expected, partly because the Queen was on the last frame to be transferred, and DH was checking each frame to make find her to make sure everything was OK.
He brought home two mostly-unused frames from the old box, as these are great for showing how the bees work.
Firstly, this is an unused frame. It has a sheet of wax in it, which the bees would use as a foundation to build on:
On this next frame, the bees have started to "draw out" the foundation. This means they've used their own wax to build the honeycomb shaped storage cells. The bottom left hand corner of the frame has not been "drawn out", the rest ofthe frame has been. You can just about see the difference in this photograph:
And lastly, on this frame there is some honey (which the camera isn't picking up very clearly), and also some pollen (which are the darker bits which you can see). The different colours are different types of pollen - pollen from different flowers.
All the theory we've learned...and now we're trying to put it in to practice!