Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Busy-ness and Bee Drama

We've had a fairly busy week.  Two days ago, my table looked like this

The green beans have now been canned up, the tomatoes, well, some have been eaten fresh, the rest are being made into sauce tomorrow.   We ran out of time to do it today, with our bee drama.

Yes, bee drama.

We checked the hives today.  We checked hive 1 first.  I harvested one frame of honey from the medium super.  There is more in there that I could ideally harvest, since their two deeps are fairly bursting with honey, but I'm thinking we're going to have a rough winter, so I'm only taking the one frame until spring.  Until  I see how they survive this winter, until I know for sure they have enough food for themselves.

But, I absolutely LOVE hive 1. 

Capped honey comb, ready to harvest.

Cutting the comb from the frame, for crushing and straining
Honey, straining into a bowl.  Will be ladled into jars.

I'm still using the crush and strain method for harvesting my honey, until we either build or buy our own extractor.  My sweet husband is looking at the plans to build one, and knowing how handy he is, that's probably the route we'll go.

Which now brings me to Hive 2.

There are not enough words in the English language for me to adequately explain to you how 100% evil this hive is.  It was all I could do to NOT burn the hive where it sits.  Just out of revenge. 

It started out well enough. We opened the top super and began pulling out frames, which I wasn't too thrilled with how they were looking.  A few of the girls buzzed around our heads in warning, but nothing abnormal to be concerned with.



When we moved the top box to check the bottom deep super -   Insanely EVIL bees!

They chased AND I MEAN AS IN A CLOUD OF BEES ABOVE MY HEAD me and DH the entire 200 ft to the pig pens! beyond the garage! They are insane!!

We turned on the water hose, set the nozzle to shower, and sprayed it in the air like rain above our head to get them to go away. They came after us again when they saw us coming back to close up the hive.

 We closed them up, didn't find the queen, so I suspect she is dead, but did see a queen cell that I left. Came in and made a call to the State Dept and the State Bee Inspector is calling me back tomorrow, plus our local county bee inspector is going to come out to look at hive 2 for me. Especially since, 1- they had a couple cells with black(ish) stuff in it that I suspect may have foulbrood  and 2- I think they are queenless and 3- I think that Hive 2 may have Small Hive Beetles. (only because I saw a worm larvae crawling on the top of the inner cover, and i squished it, and when I came in to look up foul brood found a pic of Small Hive Beetle larvae and it looked like what I killed).

I also think I may have some yellow jackets harrassing that hive. I squished (on purpose) one of those trying to get IN the hive.

Hopefully the County Inspector can give us some insight.   We'll see.  The State inspector is giving us a call tomorrow.

Worst case scenario, Hive 2 becomes a Honey Torch.  I'm afraid I'd rather enjoy torching them. 

1 comment: