I had suspected that my neglect of the bee hive last year might cause me some trouble. Unfortunately my worst fears were confirmed today.
When we got the goats last spring, we weren't really prepared for it. At least not in a time management sense. We had to really adjust our routines and learn a lot. While that's not an excuse, it did cause the bee hive to be horribly neglected.
With the nice weather we have been having the past couple weeks, I thought I would walk back to have a look today. What I found was a an empty hive. Or rather, a full hive with no living bees in it. The bees were dead and the hive was occupied by a pair of mice. So no picture today.
I took the hive apart and chased off the mice. There was very little honey left in the hive, and I do know that they had a good deal of honey toward the end of the fall. It makes me wonder if they met their demise recently. A few of the combs had an inch or so of honey left near the top.
As much as I would like to have my own fresh honey, I am thinking I need to hold off another year before trying again. We have goat kidding to learn and duck housing to build. Plus we are going to raise some bacon this summer. I don't think it would be fair to the bees to add them to the mix knowing I may be too busy to care for them again.
Maybe next year will look better.