Friday, 11 September 2009

This is an Eke

What, you may asked, is an eke? Today I install one in my hive. It's basically a square wooden frame- I made mine yesterday. The purpose of the eke is to create a space, above the brood box, into which you can place an Apiguard which is for treating the colony for the dreaded varroa. I am more or less leaving the hive alone at the moment though I am not quite sure if I should inspect it again before the air turns really cold.

We are now in the middle of September as usual we are having all kind of weather: last week it was cold and couldy last week, but this week we are having an Indian summer. Since I was told that Apigurad works best when the air temperature is 15 degree C or above I thought it's time I decide whether I will treat the bees or not. After much though I decided to do so because as one experienced fellow beekeeper pointed out should the number of varroa increases over winter (it's a really possibility) the colony will get really stressed out. Once agian keeping bees is rather like having children- sometime your are damn if you do and damn if you don't. In any case I though I should at lease treat the hive this season and see how things go. My main concern is that the colony should survive this winter, and be in good condition when next spring comes.

While cleaning the hive today I got some honey on my hive tool. We have a tiny little taste and it's good. Well for this season at least all the honey ( about 4 frames) are going to the hard working colony. We shall see what next years brings. My fingers are firmly crossed.


  1. Hi Chi. Each of my hives will go into winter with 1 full shallow super of honey stores. In addition to what is stored in the brood box, I think it's enough to get them through. I'll check late winter to make sure and if needed will feed until the honeyflow starts in the spring.

    I had never heard of the eke. Hope it works well for you. I treat with powdered sugar shakes and my girls get the treatment this weekend.

  2. Hi Lynn

    My local associate advise us that we all use Apiguard to treat the bees. I thought long and hard about this before reluctantly used the treatment. I did considered using sugar powder but not entirely confident about its effectivenss. Anyway my Varroa drop had shot up to 50 over a 6 day period. So we shall see. I want this colony to survive well over this winter.
    The eke is just a wooden frame; if you were using treatment like Apicuard you will need to create a space for the bees to have access to the stuff. Its working well so far.

    I like to hear more about your powder treatment. Please do drop me a line at my email