Sorry for the lack of photos. I wanted to take a peek at The Beests, so I was wearing gloves today and couldn't take photos.
Anyway, after seeing all of Austeja's empty combs last week, I had decided to let her just ride it out and not feed. If she made it through winter, fine. If not, that was ok, too. It was going to be a case of tough love.
However, this morning, I relented because on the way to church, I could see that the Japanese knotweed was just about done, and the goldenrod was fading, too. Maybe I was being too hard. They had been good bees. Maybe some help would be a good thing. So I took some syrup out to the hive this afternoon, and I was surprised to find that they were starting to fill the combs up with nectar again. They weren't anywhere close to being full, but all of the combs had some nectar again.
So I've reconsidered again. After all, bees have been doing their thing from time immemorial and getting on just fine without my help. Plus, if they can actually fill the combs with honey, I don't want to taint the honey with syrup. A glance at the entrance showed lots of pollen and nectar coming in. The forecast shows decent weather for awhile, too, so maybe they have some time. I flip flopped again.
The syrup went into Buttercup who got a late start and had a run of bad luck (queen lost on mating flight, bear...). She was busy building new comb when I opened her, and the syrup should help her put on some weight.
While outside, I couldn't help taking a look at the back of the other hives. None of them have any fully capped bars yet. Some of them were about 50% capped, so I'll just have to keep waiting impatiently for the bees to finish their work.