|At this time of the year, when there is little active beekeeping to be done, opportunities to reduce stress on the bees during the coming season, should be considered.
Firstly, the mantra is clean boxes, clean comb, clean frames. Wild bees will naturally build new comb each spring, by moving into adjacent space in the tree trunk, or if not possible, by swarming. Plans should be made for changing the comb in our hives, as soon as the weather permits.
Another way of reducing stress, later on in the season once swarming is over, is to consider why the colony should be opened? Is it necessary? close the hive up when the reason has been found, there is no requirement that every frame should be examined every time an inspection takes place. Commercial beekeepers allow two minutes per hive!