In early August, we decided it was time for another annual Honey Harvest.
(Did it in August too, in 2017)
They have been busy buzzing but have not swarmed so we felt they, or I should say ‘the queen’, is contented with the location of the hive*.
(There’s a reason why we were watching that factor, keep reading.)
The honey harvest was scheduled, weather permitted so we got going.
The smoking began
Each bar was carefully inspected when removed.
The bees were gently brushed off.
Combs were cut off into a bucket which got immediately covered thereafter.
Oh, they knew …
We made sure we only harvested a small fraction of what was there. They will have time to make more for their needs in winter but why take more than we will use in a year?
As is, from the 6 bars that were “harvested” we ended up with 11 lbs of pure Honey.
Aren’t they just beautiful?
The Honey Harvest worked as planned but …
It’s been 6 days since we spotted Swarm No. 2 but how long had it been there before we noticed it is anyone’s guess. Day after day I’ve been watching it closely hoping that the “scouts” would persuade the Queen-bee to move to the Swarm Box a.k.a. Hivingham Palace.
Alas (or should I be filled with glee?), I think they’ve made their decision to live in a Treehive about 25 feet above ground level.
… still up on the tree today.
How did I come to that conclusion? Well, the wind & rain calmed down today and while the workers were out gathering food, I actually saw a comb.
a tree comb!
Is their comb safe on the tree? Will it get heavy and fall off when filled with honey and larvae? I guess Mother Nature will show me how she works on things.
Now, there are 2 Swarms of Bees in our front yard!!
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find…” ~ Matthew 7:7
Today, the weather permitted us, the Accidental Beekeepers, to move our bees comfortably and hopefully for them (bees) too, our treasured self-invited Honey Bees. For a month, we were ready but had to hold back because of weather conditions, visitors, county mosquito spraying, etc… etc…
But today, we did it! Unlike the 1st time moving, when things were quite disorganized, today we were more prepared and everything went smoothly. The job took only 2½ hours and we even handled some curved combs with no panic. 😀
From my Compost Drum to the new DIY Top Bar Hive.
Drum’s screws were undone earlier; now to do the last 2 holding all together.
There they were, even building new combs.
Drum’s top half was removed; now the combs’ move begins …
We are accidental Honey Bee Keepers. We did not look for Bees, Bees found us. One reason they don’t mind our yard, I guess, is because there is no spraying of pesticides or insecticides. Here, Mother Nature rules.
This is our 1st Bee Move and all that we have learned is from the internet. We have observed and researched and decided ~ It’s Now or Never ~ because come winter, it would not be a good time and the Bees are going to need their honey badly.
So with homemade Top Bar Hive ready … we moved the Bees from the top of our Rain Water Barrels’ Cabinet to their new abode.
Entry point above Rain barrel Cabinet
It’s pretty high up.