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Woo hoo! The bees are combing!
Here we are at the start of week 4 and comb production is well under way. We've had a couple of cold snaps with night time temperatures below freezing, so I was concerned that progress would come to a crawl. I didn't want to open up the hives in the cold to check on them either. So I'm thankful we are starting to warm up again.
When I opened up the upper brood supers I found that nearly all the bees were conveniently in the bottom brood chamber this time (it was still cool out this morning, so they were huddling together for warmth). So I filled up the internal feeders with syrup and set the upper super to the side. That's when I saw it. Beautiful, fresh honeycomb practically overflowing between two of the frames. As I pulled the frames out to inspect, I found nearly two and a half frames were filled. Egg laying had already begun and some of the cells were filled with freshly collected pollen. Others near the edges of the frames appeared to have some honey in them. Of course, while tempted to sample, everything there is for the bees.
In just a little over a week they've gone from having hardly any comb to nearly filling two and a half frames. All I can say is - Amazing. Even though there are thousands of them, their work ethic really puts me to shame. The second hive was a near duplicate of the first.
There is no comb building going on in the upper brood supers, which is good. But the thirsty little guys did manage to drink down all three quarts of syrup in both internal hive feeders. On my next hive opening in about two weeks, I'll try to get some better pictures to share. It will probably be time to rotate some of the full frames to the outer edge of the hive and bring the empty ones to the center.