Still on the topic of comments...I had long resisted putting word verification CAPTCHAs on the comment form as frankly, they frustrate the heck out of me when I have to figure them out on other sites. However, the spam comments piled up and up, sometimes as many as 60 /day and I finally gave in. After a couple of complaints I took it off yesterday to try it out and immediately the spam started again. I apologize, but the word verification is going back on. If it's difficult for you, kindly email your thoughts and comments.
The bees are busy getting their houses in order for the winter. The mild weather has provided them relief from staying inside and they are out enjoying the sunshine. There are not many blooms around for them to feed on (still some dandelions) so hubby has added feeders. The tan coloured box on top of the hive on the right in this picture shows the feeder. Basically it is a trough with a wire cage at one end. Sugar syrup goes in the trough and trickles through the mesh where the bees can access it. The mesh keeps the bees from getting into the bath of syrup and drowning.
You can see them crowding around to enjoy a sweet treat. They are able to convert the sugar syrup into honey which they will eat during the long winter ahead.
When we remove the top covers to the hives, there are always lots of ladybugs who have gathered to find shelter. They are separated from the bees so there is no interaction, they've just found a nice winter home in the hive lid. Everyone needs a place to set up housekeeping.