Thursday, May 8, 2014

Brand New Beehives!

This was a busy week for us. We received our delivery from Mann Lake of our two new beehives. We bought the apiary kit from them, which includes the basics that you need to start a new hive. A bottom board with an entrance reducer, a telescoping cover, an inner cover, and we went with the 4 medium boxes with wooden frames. I prefer medium boxes over deeps as the brood box because I find that it's easier for me to lift when the box is full of wax, brood, and honey. With the addition of these two hives, we now are the proud owners of five hives in total. Two years ago, when I started this beekeeping adventure, I didn't think my passion for raising honeybees would grow to this level. I think any devoted beekeeper would tell you that it's something you can't quite explain until you try it. Maintaining your own hives is an amazing experience. One that I learn from constantly and a hobby I know I will maintain for many years to come.
Emily, one of our beehive hosts wanted the hive to be sky blue. Since neither Paul or I have backyards to keep our hives, we use her backyard as the host location. She picked out the paint and we spent last Saturday afternoon painting the hive. We use an exterior paint to paint the hives to protect the boxes from the elements of being outside. It rains and snows a lot here, so a good exterior paint helps a lot with the inclement weather.
Paul had a great idea to hang the freshly painted boxes on tree limbs in hopes that they would dry faster. I really thought this looked pretty funny. It reminded me of an art installation.
Hanging them on tree limbs allowed the sun and wind to hit every angle of the box. The neighbors must have thought we were weird.
We temporarily assembled the hive on top of cinderblock. This hive will get a bee nucleus which is due to arrive in late May. I really love how the color came out.
And here is a view of all three hives in Emily's backyard. I think it looks pretty awesome!
After we finished painting and installing, next we went over to our other beehive host located a few blocks away. When we arrived, Oscar the kitty was there to greet us right away! Oscar lives here and watches us beekeep every Saturday. If you look closely, you can see his "girlfriend" neighborhood kitty in the background. We don't know who owns the girlfriend but she follows Oscar everywhere! He's not very fond of that.
Here's Oscar inspecting my beesuit.
We installed the new hive temporarily next to the older one. Can you tell it's new? LOL. So shiny! We're calling this new hive Oscar's Honeywell.
I did an inspection to see how well the new Queen is laying. We installed this package this spring, so we are keeping a watchful eye on her.
The Queen in the Carlton Reserve hive is laying perfect brood. She has just about filled this entire frame of brood. This is the pattern you want to see in the hive, because it means she is laying in practically ever cell. Pretty awesome!!

1 comment:

  1. Well I'm wishing and hoping my bees come soon. I need them desperately. I have hives standing unprotected, with honey in them. I have no room to take them down. Whodathunk I would have lost all of my hives but one. You are right, when you first get into beekeeping, you think one hive is enough. Then another, then another, and then you wonder how it happened that you ended up with so many hives!

    Cindy Bee


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