My two colonies were inspected mid October by an association member. Upon
hefting the hives, it was determined that neither colony had enough stores for the winter.
I’ve been continuously feeding the two colonies 2:1 syrup since September. I’ve now switched to fondant. I’ve taken a step back now and hope the bees make it through the winter with their existing stores and fondant.
It was also agreed that the new apiary location will be better for the bees (currently there is too much shade in the morning). Depending on the weather, I’ll look at moving them in December or January. I’m very fortunate this time around as some of the allotment members have already cleared the site for me.
I must confess that I may need to give up beekeeping. In the past when I’ve been stung by bees or wasps, I’ve just had localised swelling. However, when I was recently stung by a bee I developed severe, full body hives in addition to localised swelling. Given the remote location of the apiary, the fact that the gates on the allotment are kept locked and sometimes I’ve been the only one there; anaphylactic shock could be deadly. I’ve booked an appointment with the GP to discuss options.
At this point I’m not clear on the future plans of my apiary. Maybe I’ll have to give up beekeeping and resume safer hobbies such as mountain biking and climbing. Seriously though, I really hope I don’t have to give it up.