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Monday, June 15, 2015

The Hivening


From Saturday:

We are splitting a hive, late in the season, and the thought of exposing and handling 50,000 nervous bees is a tad daunting. Smoker at the ready.

As a wild ass in the desert go I forth to my work...
The honey must flow!!

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The Hivening is done! Nary a sting! LOTS of bees!
I had apparently neglected the poor dears. Overbuilding of honey cells. Had I had a super on, we might have had an actual harvest. As it stands, we had to trim some comb off. Honey-filled comb.
Poor us.
We put four brood frames into the new hive, and six empty ones, for growing room. Put 4 new frames in the older hive.
If anyone sees a flaw in my logic and practise, feel free to message me.
We brought the scrapings in, and got a couple of spoons to taste the bees' wares.
Eye-rollingly fantastic. We tasted the honey...smooth, light flavor, no throat-burning like many honeys.
We immediately went out to the hives to thank them, bless them and pray for their continued fruitfulness. I have a very St. Francis relationship with my bees. I love the little things. If not for their apiary stewardship, there would be few, and hungry humans on our world. The weak, the small, granted such responsibility for good.
Seems a parable, yes?

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The honeycomb we trimmed from the hive wound up having eight bees in it. Herself rescued seven and returned them to the hive. Number eight had buzzed its last. I had a fatality last night whilst tending the li'l darlin's. A worker landed on my right leather glove, and took umbrage at the fashion statement. I watched her sting and then pull away, leaving stinger and a small trail of her inwards on my glove. I felt bad for her. But she died protecting The Hive. For Queen and Country! Brave little thing.

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The Queen is dead. Long live the Queen.
Our new queen is not merely pining...she is pushin' up the daisies.
This is an ex-queen bee.
Must acquire a replacement pronto.


3 comments:

Doom said...

I thought the bees would develop a new queen? Or not in time to keep the hive together? Just curious.

Yeah, it's that bite that I don't like with honey. You are truly blessed to have honey without that. I like throaty in whiskey, not in sweet. I need to check on local bee keepers, try their wares, see if I can find honey I tolerate, in the raw pretty much... cleaned a little, but... Good for medicine in several ways, lasts a long time (forever to a degree), and as an edible? Good stuff.

I thought you could eat the bees, too. Not that I would think that advisable, with the bee thing anyway. But, a properly trimmed herd might make that reasonable, at some point. Though maybe it is only certain types of bees? Being a beeophile, though, I'm not sure you could do that. Though, remember, St. Francis, while a lover of flora and fauna, did not lose perspective. Need, and man, right behind God, ahead of our charges. Balance. Don't hate me. Well, you can, just... get over it? For your own sake.

The Aardvark said...

Doom, I always appreciate your comments. I only hate you because you're beautiful.


I was really surprised by the honey. I used to hate the gooey stuff, but I have become somewhat more sane over the years. I would be loath to eat bees. They might be a tad...spicier...than I would like.

I had some more of the honey (QC, y'know) and found the flavor to resemble sourwood honey, at least by memory. That is wonderful!

Doom said...

*blush*