Cliffe Castle Bee Blog #1 2023
Our stop/start spring this year has meant that we haven’t been able to return the bees to their Cliffe Castle Hive in time for the Easter weekend. The little colony has been on the move though, as our lease on the Airedale Beekeepers’ apiary site at East Riddlesden Hall has come to an end. So, the Cliffe Castle bees travelled, by road, to our new apiary site a few weeks ago.
I’m planning a visit to see them there on Good Friday and hope, with a quick check, to find signs of eggs and brood on several frames. This tells us that the Queen is still at home and laying hard to build up the colony for the new season. The next step is to make arrangements to get the bees back to Cliffe Castle. We need some warm, settled weather and the help of Museum staff to work out when we can return the bees safely.
Keep an eye out for news of their return!
Can you see the tiny bee eggs in this picture? They have all been laid by a queen bee. When the bees are back in the Observation Hive you can sometimes see the queen on an outer frame, she will have a yellow dot on her upper body (thorax), as she was born last year. Watch carefully, and you may see her place the tip of her body into a cell to lay an egg at the bottom, just like those in this picture.