Spring this year is significantly warmer and earlier compared to last year. Goat willows bloomed 15 days earlier vs. 2021, and, most importantly, due to favorable weather, bloomed long and provided extremely strong nectar and pollen flow. At the end of April, willows overlapped with maple tree bloom and the flow was uninterrupted. Such conditions just exploded the overwintered bee colonies, and we've got an extreme rarity in the apiary - a chance to harvest goat willow honey before the fruit tree flow. In Lithuania, such conditions ae typically once in five years or more. Dandelions kicked in end of first week of May, and the honey supers are getting filled fast. Expected first harvest in a week, so mid-May, which is more than a month earlier vs last year. Not mentioning that the early honey is special as such this year. First harvest will be fruit tree free ( apples, pears and plums), and the next one will be more standard ( typical) early summer harvest already dominated by dandelions and orchards.
This year, again, as a tradition, bait hives were setup in the wild Labanoras forest for hunting of wild (wild) feral bee swarms. Last year I managed to catch a very nice swarm of the nearly extinct black bees, which is now comfortably, colony No. 7.
All in all, wonderful spring. Strong and long nectar flow. All colonies overwintered well, 6/9 got early honey supers on. Seems a bit of a miracle that not only there will be honey to harvest but also very soon.
First honey harvest will be special, coming from goat willows, maple trees and dandelions with a tiny touch of apple trees and plums.