Strange day?

I’m home today from work not feeling great.  This morning I walked around the garden and checked on the bees and all seemed to be well.   Bees from the big hive have been hanging out outside for several weeks, but I expected quite a bit more bearding than this considering the heat we’ve been having.

Here’s a close up shot of the landing board on the big hive.  I did see some fanning, but mostly they just appeared to be checking out the landing board.  Cleaning it maybe?  Do bees do that?

So, I was in the office this afternoon and happened to notice strange activity in the bee yard.  It was a startlingly contrast to the quiet peacefulness of the morning.   I stepped outside to check it out.

The picture shows some activity, but doesn’t really do it justice.   The bees just seemed oddly agitated.  I wasn’t getting any closer than this (especially in my pjs!), so I shot a quick video:

The only thing we changed this morning was to remove the hive reducer in the middle hive because I was concerned they would have trouble with ventilation.  I’m wondering if it is possible that we had a large amount of brood born at once and these are all orientation flights?

Update:  I now feel quite confident that these are only orientation flights.  If they calm down in the next few hours, I’ll know for sure.  While reading through Beesource for answers, I found the following video that shows someone else’s experience with orientation flights:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RW16JOPBhSA&playnext_from=TL&videos=8QRiE2C0gKU

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One Response

  1. I was concerned about my bees flying like that too. First I thought bees from one hive were stealing from the other, but it seems that if the bees were stealing honey from a hive, the bees would be darting in and out of the hive quickly. Mine were mostly hovering around the hive. Here’s an example:

    http://mudsongs.org/bees-and-pollen-video/

    They do this once or twice a day. Now I know better.

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