My adventure in Bee Keeping has been such a JOY! I've enjoyed every single thing about learning about a hobby that I knew NOTHING about until this year. Now that I have brushed the surface in my research, I am so fascinated. I get so giddy excited when I spy a honeybee here on the property while she is working (Only females are the worker bees, Did you know that?). The kids are the same way..first they see a honeybee, then they squeal with excitement, then they yell "Mom I see one of our honeybees!!" Seriously it's so gratifying to see them get to excited about such little things.
So this post is to bring you all up to speed on what I've been up to while visiting the hive over the past month. In these first pictures you will see the children devouring whole comb raw honey!! They were SO EXCITED, THRILLED, OUT-OF-CONTROL CRAZY HAPPY people when they heard me announce I had some honey for them (of course I was included in all those reactions as well.) Here is the little story on how we got honey already: It was time for me to add on the second deep (brood) box to the hive and apparently no one told my bees the "rules" of building comb. They built the comb up above the frames, making it impossible to add the second box. So after consulting someone who actually knows what they are doing, I smoked them down into the hive, scraped off the extra comb (which was filled with honey!) and brought it in to share.
My plan was to take some picture of their comb building extraordinaire, and I was thrilled upon discovering we would actually get to try some honey. I took my camera out and was prepared to capture this all on my camera. I turned on my camera, got it all focused (remember I'm all suited up with gloves and all), with the perfect shot ready...then I read "NO MEMORY CARD" on my screen. Yep...tis' true.
Fast forward a couple weeks, I wanted to check the hives for eggs, capped brood, and emerging bees. I really wasn't positive that I would know what I was looking at, but I thought I would at least try. I was so happy that I could actually see all the things I was looking for in each hive! My queens are doing their job. This information was thrilling! I know the picture is horrible....but I was trying to hurry. You can see they had one again built the comb up a bit above the frames. The first time is was extreme.
Again the quality of picture is so terrible! I was a little anxious about trying to make out each item I was looking for, not lose the queen, make the bees mad, etc. I just wanted you to get a very general look at what the frame looked like. This entire frame was all capped over with brood (new bees) and honey.
Fast forward a couple more weeks, I was now told I'm ready to add my honey supers! This is the honey the bees make that is mine to keep. Up until now they have been solely making honey that they will eat on during the winter months. Both of my lower deeps are not 100% full, but both of them are at about 70%. Even though I just installed the package this Spring the dry weather, and with the honey flow being so great, I was told my hives being very diligent I just might get some HONEY THIS YEAR! I also have discontinued feeding them their sugar water mixture for those same reasons I list I listed above. I am hoping that since more and more flowers are blooming, and things in the garden are flowering, that the bees will have plenty of things to pollinate and keep them nice and busy making honey!
I'm linking up to Homestead Revival's Barn Hop this week...go check it out!