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I began this blog to chronicle my beekeeping experiences. I have read lots of beekeeping books, but nothing takes the place of either hands-on experience with an experienced beekeeper or good pictures of the process. I want people to have a clearer picture of what to expect in their beekeeping so I post pictures and write about my beekeeping saga here. Along the way, I've passed a number of certification levels and am now a Master Beekeeper! Enjoy with me as I learn and grow as a beekeeper.


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Sunday, April 30, 2006

Help from new friend and beekeeper Nicky

April 22, 2006: Nicky came over and helped me light the smoker and remove the upper hive body. We first lifted the cover and smoked a little from the back onto the top of the frames. Then we took off the top, standing to the right of the hive and set it upside down to the left of the hive. Then we smoked the hole in the inner cover and lifted it up and laid it crosswise on the telescoping cover. Then we smoked the tops of the frames again and lifted the upper hive body and placed it on the ground behind the hives.

There were lots of bees in the upper body so we took each frame and shook it gently over the lower hive body to release them. Then we set each frame back in the hive body and when it was all done, left the hive body open on the ground behind the hive. Within 30 minutes all the bees had left the open hive body. We scraped some of the comb off of the tops of the frames in the lower body and saved it to taste. Then we put the hive back together again. We chewed the wax and tasted the very sweet honey (they are drinking sugar syrup.)

Things I learned:
1. How to use the smoker – she feeds hers cedar chips and pine straw. When she is done, she has carved down a wine cork to fit the opening and stops it up with that.
2. Wear a bandana under the hat/veil to keep hair from falling into face
3. Stacking the hive parts every other one the opposite direction helps keep you from killing bees.
4. I need to add a super in about a week. I have shallow supers but will also order a medium super for brood from Dadant tomorrow morning.

Wish I had pictures from this - what a great bee day!

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