Bees back!

It was a warm sunny day today, and while standing on the deck, one of our beautiful black bees landed on me.  I was very pleased to see her, and immediately went up to check on the hives to see what kind of activity there was.  I had been concerned about how well the bees had over-wintered, especially the second colony, as they hadn't had a chance to build themselves up as much as the first before winter set in.

As it turned out, the second colony had a lot more activity around the entrance than the first one.  This seemed to be because the first hive was more in the shade (and thus cooler), so I cut back some branches that were giving perhaps a bit too much shade, and within a short while there were bees at both entrances.

One of the woven willow windbreaks around the apiary had fallen down, and with help from our first WWOOFers of the season, Eric, Max and Jurinde, we lifted the willow section back into place.  In doing so, the top of the willow scraped against one of the hives, providing some entertainment for our volunteers as I jumped at the sting I received.