Last autumn Peter tried his hand at marking one of the queens: his first attempt. Well, he messed up a bit and managed to get green paint on her head as well as her thorax. We were worried she might not survive. Anyway, today we opened up the hive to check things out and add a box. There was plenty of brood and down there he saw the green queen in great shape working hard. What a relief.
The Espoo hives seem to be thriving. The one nearest the stream is packed full of bees with two boxes full of brood. With all the wind and rain we've been having recently, Peter is worried that they won't be able to forage enough food for the hatched youngsters. But over the stream there is a huge amount of food: willow in vast quantities and now dandelions too. This hive is very sticky, with a lot of propolis in between the frames.