The wind is back drying out everything and it is hot.
The bees love it. The hive is extremely active. The inspection showed that they have almost finished drawing out the last foundation wax. Tomorrow we'll put another super on with 10 new foundations.
Having read on another blog that the blogger was not bothering with a queen excluder it seemed worth the experiment to go without one. The queen is marked and easy to find and it is easy enough to put in an excluder later and any brood in the upper super will hatch within 5 weeks. Giving her access means that she has more space to lay should she be prolific and run out of brood space. The alternative would be to move some brood up to the top super and put in a queen excluder. We will move the two frames of brood up any way but I'm curious as to what will happen if the queen gets free range of the hive.
Opening the hive drives Small Hive Beetles down into the trap in the base which is a good thing. After checking the hive I pulled out the trap and there were about a dozen SHB running around. After stirring the diatomaceous earth in the trap it was reinstalled. We've found that if there is a good depth of diatomaceous earth then all it needs is a stir to freshen it up and make sure it is soft and fluffy and the SHB get a good coating and can't get out. In high humidity or wet weather the diatomaceous earth tends to form a crust may need to be replaced with soapy water. Soapy water is fine but it starts to stink in just a few days requiring more regular cleaning.
Despite all the hot wind we ran the mulcher for a couple of hours and managed to process the bulk of the foliage from the eucalypts that we remove a couple of weeks ago. Five barrow loads of mulch was put around various fruit trees in the house garden where it is less likely to be spread by active chooks.