By MsMun

Cup Full

Temperatures today have floated around mid to low teens, loaded cloud cover, and patchy rain.

I had to take some anti-inflammatory medication yesterday for my back and shoulders.  There's nothing to worry about - it was caused by a boxing session I had with the PT the day before.  It's days like these that I realise that I probably only use 80% of my muscles on a day to day basis.  There are no knots, just a very tense right trapezium muscle.  My calfs are a ball of tightness too. The only other thing more painful than micro tears is a parking fine. Ouch. I was gifted one today for the trouble of not being able to find a legitimate spot outside my mums place.

I spent the morning chaperoning my mum on a trip to the doctors - just the annual check up on bloods, and to get another round of prescriptions.  I wonder if I will inherit my dad's diabetes or my mum's hypertension.  She has definitely shared her genes for lack of hair pigment.

J made up some nuc sized bee boxes for the swarm I captured.
I am calling it The Wombat.  I lifted the top off the swarm nuc this morning to check in the feeder compartment.  It was full of bees.  
That is a sign that there is not enough surface area within the hive for bees to stand on.  They can't suspend themselves in midair in a bee box nor do they like being piled up on top of each other.

Meanwhile...Hive #3 is not making progress, so I plan to take off the top box tomorrow to keep the space size commensurate with their ability to keep it warm and clean.  I was wondering what the signs were for adding space for growing bee colonies.  Apparently it is at the 80% capacity mark (all frames drawn with wax comb & 80% filled with brood/stores).
A midnight consult with Dr Google led me to Michael Bush's website, who describes 'compression' as a good way to gauge the efficiency and health of a bee colony, and not by the industry standard of bee population.  Compression describes well the dynamic situation of the hive population relative to its space.
Too much space weakens a hive, as the bees need to spend extra energy to maintain the correct climate.  Too little space, the bees feel stressed and may swarm or abscond.
So much to learn.

The big news is, I bought and picked up a 3 frame centrifugal honey extractor this afternoon.  I am itching to set up the honey workshop in the shed!

This is a wild rose, probably a descendant of an escaped climbing dog rose. We find them popping up as unexpected migrants from elsewhere. The wildlife must enjoy the hips. I’ve made jelly before - full of big pips. Next time I’ll brew with them instead. The ancient Egyptians used to make beer flavoured with rose petals and pistachio nuts. Guess what I’ll be researching tonight?
I discovered recently that there is indeed a seaweed style beer, the base of which is a red Scottish ale
using malted barley.
I’m still researching that one before I attempt it.


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