I can't believe little S is already starting school, I hope he is having a wonderful time. We have been having a first on this side of the atlantic too. Some were calling it beemegedon (me), somewere calling it bee-pocalypse (R), whatever we named it we had a bit of a bemergency last weekend (ok I'll stop with that silliness now).
We decided to honey harvest, it was our first real proper one, where we have actually got a lot of frames filled with honey. R did a small harvest a few weeks ago and went in with full confidence that we could do it easily, quickly and cleanly. Well that didn't quite happen!
sweeping the bees off the frame and into the hive
A frame full of capped honey
That is a lot of bees
1. When stealing honey from the bees, make sure they can't find it again
Well actually that is it.
You see what happened was, we went and put the honey in our new shed, which has just holes for windows and doors and we covered it with t shirts. Apparently bees aren't stupid. We left the honey with three bees hovering around, after 15 mintues I was sat by the window thinking, wow there are a lot more bees going at the honey now. Well we ran down and tried to save the honey but there were too many bees, we swept around 10 frames clean of bees hid it (properly this time) leaving 4 frames to be robbed and striped clean of honey by the bees. The bees kept pinging down one after another after another, the back garden was full of them.
Lowering the stolen honey off the roof
a lone bee drinking as much of the honey as she can
Covering the frames with t-shirts (note to self, this does not stop bees getting the honey!)
On Sunday morning the bees were still coming down to the shed and still buzzing in the garden (bee memory takes a while to clear). But the tragedy of the dead bees has been lessened by seeing that there are still plenty of bees forging and busy and enjoying the clear, clean, bright sunshiny day that rose from the previous days storm.
Now we just have to extract the honey, more on that next week!
Lots of love