Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Beginner Beekeepers- the Girls Arrived!

One of our Topbar Hives

 Well today is the day that we officially became Beekeepers. Ben built 2 Topbar hives for my birthday this year because of my interest in honeybees.
Bees arrived in 2 crates

Sporting my beesuit
The postoffice called twice this am before 7:30. I think they were pretty anxious for me to come pick up my bees. I don't think they wanted 10,000 bees per crate accidentally getting out.

"The Girls" were pretty worked up when I picked them up. Buzzing furiously. When I got them home, I put them in the basement and sprayed them down good with sugar water, they settled down to almost silence.

 When we got home this evening, we sprayed "The Girls" down again. Got them drunk and happy, then opened them up. We pulled out the queen cage and saw that she looked good, then attached her to a frame. Next we poured the clump of bees into the hive. They just dumped in a huge mass, I shook them around some more and dumped them in and set the crate under the hive for the stragglers to find their way. Ben and I were suited up, but the bees were amazingly calm. The boys actually stood about 10 ft away by the creek in shorts, short sleeves, and flip flops. The bees never went anywhere near them.
 We waited about 3 hours between hives, so we wouldn't confuse the bees or cause a bee war. By the time we started on the 2nd one, the 1st hive had only a few bees buzzing around checking out the area.
Now we wait about 3 days and go check on the queen. She should be out of her cage, the bees should be drawing out comb on the topbars, and she should be laying eggs. More to come....


Kev said...

Too cool can't wait to see them!

Mom said...

Great pics. Should be an interesting hobby for you all to enjoy as a family. Hope they like their new home. Saw a segment on the show Kentucky Life about extracting the honey from the hive.

jimmythegeek said...

What a great idea! I'll be looking forward to some of Ben's mead & maybe a honey-wheat beer later on :)

I hope this works well for you guys!!