Saturday, October 10, 2015

Finishing the Hive Assembly

 Are you still following? Great! Did you sense my frustration in the last post? At the time I thought I was in over my head but once you complete one hive the rest are easy. Here's how I felt about the finished product back then...

My bee project is humming along. A couple of days ago I primed and painted the hive. If you missed the beginning of this process click here. I am now ready to be the mother (though not the queen) to about 10,000 little humming darlings. The bees (sold in 3 lb. packages) are set to arrive at my local post office the last week in April. Judging from the reaction I got from the employees there when I picked up my baby chicks, I'm guessing a noisy swarm of bees in a box is going to get me moved right to the front of the line!

A surprise visit from out of town relatives taught me something about beekeeping. It's pretty darn fascinating and people are intrigued by a hive even when it's empty. Everyone has questions (some I have answers to and some I don't) and everyone has jokes. So yes, the buzz on the street is that this will make me the queen bee if it doesn't turn out to be a sting operation...oh, Honey, you get the idea. Please feel free to make up your own...

Underneath the metal topped telescoping cover you find the top cover of the hive body.

Removing the top cover reveals the frames, in this case ten of them.

The frames hold the foundation that the bees will actually "work." This is plastic foundation covered with bees wax but I've ordered a smaller local variety of bee and may need to replace this with a real wax one with smaller compartments. This is better for the larger breeds of bee, and apparently my bees will grow larger to work the larger cells on this foundation if I don't replace it. I'll be ordering up some small cell beeswax foundation and putting it in these frames before my bees arrive.

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