Terrible photo, a bit fuzzy, but great to see the girls are out there! The activity around the hives was amazing and the noise quite deafening. There are no leaves on the trees yet so, on a still day like today, all you can hear are the bees, the birds and the occasional tractor. It was +14C this afternoon, wind still, bright and sunny. An excellent foraging day.
Peter mixed the oxalic acid solution but we decided to wait until it was dark to open the hives. Oxalic acid occurs naturally in vegetables like rhubarb and spinach and is effective is reducing varroa mite infestations. The most important treatment is in winter, but professional bee-keepers also recommend a quick spray in the spring.
This photo was taken on the alder, down by the lake, but there were also bees on the hazelnut catkins (we have plenty of those). The willow, which are almost but not quite in flower, are a better source of pollen, and then the dandelions will flower and we will be racing to build up the hives and make more room.
I noticed a large swarm of bees hovering over a fallen spruce, down near the storage container. Peter reckons they were looking for honeydew.