Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Bee News

Last night I went to my second bee club meeting of the Tupelo Honey Association.  As usual I learned a lot.  Two men who are members created the better beetle blaster traps and I won one of them as a door prize.  I had to ask what do I do with it?....LOL  Boy will I be glad when I don't feel like a total idiot.

A fellow from the department of agriculture was there and I found out all of our bees has to be registered in the state of Florida even if you are only doing it as a hobby so now I have all that paperwork to do and will have to have my bees inspected on a regular basis.

Today Papa Bear and I checked the hives to see if the queens had been released.  It was the first chance we've had since we have had rain off and on this week. I got the smoker going with only a little trouble with the first attemptThe first hive had released the queen from her cage.  I checked 3 out of the 10 frames and never did see her but comb was being drawn and I think I saw a few eggs so I assume she is in there and doing her job.  It was starting to cloud up and I wanted to get to the next hive so I didn't examine things as long as I would have liked to.

The queen was still in her cage in the second hive.  There were bees all over the cage but none looked to be trying to sting her so I brushed the bees off and used a wood screw to remove the cork on the opposite end of the candy plug.  I barely touched the cork with the screw and the cork fell inside the cage and I almost stabbed the queen with the wood screw!  I got her out and into the hive without murdering her.

We did put the bucket feeders I ordered a few weeks ago into the top of an empty brood box on both hives I put 1/2 gallon of syrup into each feeder.  Each hive has been going through a quart of syrup every two days since we put them in the hives.  This will give me an extra day or so without disturbing the bees too much.  I would have put a couple of gallons into each hive but I don't know how long the syrup would last in the heat before it ferments. 

Unfortunately for me and the bees I will have to disturb them again tomorrow.  I forgot when I was in the hives that I was suppose to remove the  clumps of wax the bees had made on the frames beside the queen cages.  I guess I need to make a checklist of everything I need to do while I am tending the hives.  Seems like I always forget something.  I am still amazed at how gentle the bees seem to be and I made it though using the smoker,  opening the hives and not getting stung which I think is amazing.

I did find out that I do want a frame holder and the clamp you use to pull up the frame.  I ordered those today.


  1. My first year I was delighted at my gentle bees and wondered what all the fuss was about veils and jackets. The second year when I got into the hives and they were really established and I had to break a few larva cells when removing a frame in the brood chamber.... I found out why.

    They get meaner and more defensive the larger the colony gets.

    1. LOL Preppy....I knew there was more to this than meets the eye!

      Usually if there is a stinging or biting insect within a mile it will find me. That is why I am so surprised I have not gotten stung by a honeybee yet.

  2. oh Mamma - it sounds like you are doing an awesome job - cut yourself some slack - you are just starting out and you will forget things and make mistakes. and as you are learning we are learning with you. congrats on winning the prize!

    your friend,

  3. kymber...I don't know about awesome but it is fun learning. Now PP tells me my sweet little bees are going to be mean to me next year ...LOL

    If I get a chance I will try to get a picture of the bees on a frame while they are still nice being nice to me.

  4. On the bright side the hive that went all feral on my butt the second year and swarmed the third was a pretty tame hive again this year. They didn't even build much burr comb and were pretty Ok with my inspection this last weekend.

    They haven't even chased me out of the garden this year. Yet.

    So it varies I guess

    1. Oh ya I didn't get stung at all my first year even when I made a split. The second year I got stung 10 times in one inspection. One even crawled into my boot top and waited to sting me when I was back inside and taking my boots off.


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