Hello and THANK YOU for checking out my first post on the Notes from the Field blog. I would like to introduce myself by introducing one of the most interesting aspects of my job as a Cleveland Metroparks naturalist; keeping honeybees.
My first task in this adventure was to locate the ruler of the proverbial roost – The Queen. The process of looking for the one honeybee that looks different from the other 2999 (but only slightly different) was a slow one …and the ladies were unhappy with my intrusion. Finding the queen is an important step to confirm that the hive is what bee keepers call ‘Queen Right,’ meaning that the hive has a queen that is actively laying eggs.
This image is a good representation of what it looks like on the inside of the hive as well. Do you think you could locate the queen in this mass of bees?
While you are in the hive searching for the queen, this may also be a good time for you to look for eggs. My reading suggested that the eggs would be extremely small. I would feel comfortable saying that the eggs can be as tiny as a single speck of dust. They grow, of course, to approximately half the size of a grain of rice. A Magnifying glass IS recommended during this part of the process.
Want to know what happened next? Read more about my adventures in honeybee keeping in next month's blog.