Cleaning up your hives in the spring is an essential part of beekeeping. Its also a chance to get a feel of how your hive(s) are doing. A beekeeper will take off his winter gear and put it into storage. A beekeeper will clean and autopsy dead outs. A beekeeper will clean out bottom board and other equipment before inventorying his equipment. Lastly, the brood boxes should be switched.
For us we had one dead out, Lakti. We cleaned that up, however, we do not have pictures of the clean up.
Here are Mom and Olivia going into Olivia’s hive looking to see what’s going on and where the bees are clustering.
Olivia looking at a frame full of bees.
Here Abigail is smoking the hive while Bethany is looking at a frame in her hive.
Abigail and Bethany taking turns pulling out frames.
Abigail looking at a frame while Bethany is putting hers back.
Abigail separating the box from the bottom board. Bethany is ready to move the box.
Abigail pulling the entrance reducer off the bottom board.
Abigail and Bethany cleaning the bottom board off. Sugar, dead bees, and wood chip pieces that collected over the winter were on it.
Look at all the sugar and assorted other things flying off the bottom board.
Abigail re-leveling the bricks.
Bethany carefully laying down the box that was originally on the top. We do this so the bee cluster will work up again.
We added the box that was on the bottom to the top. Then we were done.
Spring clean up for five hives (including the dead out) is long work, but is essentially to keeping the bees healthy and equipment clean.