Have you ever seen an observation bee hive? This summer I had the opportunity to see one in action at Rossman Apiaries in Moultrie, Georgia. Since we already have a Flow Hive and a horizontal hive along with a couple of traditional hives, I wasn’t surprised when my husband started talking about doing one of these kind of hives.
I went so far as to check into how to make an observation hive myself. Look at this one
So I found a handbook and started studying. Still not sure if I wanted to take the risk of 4,000 bees getting loose in my house. But if others could do it, why not me?
However, I have decided I am not that brave or curious. My husband and I have decided the bees are nice as long as they are outside not inside. Besides I found out this week that the sound of bees near my face still freaks me out. So not a good idea to have them in my living room where I would really hear them. I admire all the people who can do this though.
Here is our newest bee hive. It is our version of the horizontal Langstroth hive I found here and here. We decided we like beekeeping but needed a better system that didn’t involve so much lifting. We looked at another idea which I will share in another post but decided this was the best for us. So when my grandson said he needed a project for his SAE project for Future Farmers, I saw my opportunity to make it. One of the really neat things about this one is that much of the material came from recycled materials we had saved. This one will hold up to 40 frames and has slats in it so you can check bees without distrubing all of the bees.
I also wanted something that would be pleasing to look at when a person drove by since our home is on a fairly busy road now. I thought it would fun to make the hive a piece of yard art. I hope to sell some hives. But this one will be kept for me. Enjoy the pictures.
We finally decided to harvest our flow hive. He was able to do it wearing shorts and without smoking or disturbing the bees at all. Amazing! Other than one bee who was determined to protect his hive and finally got a sting in on my husband’s forehead, it was uneventful. Uneventful but productive and satifying! As the pictures show, truly honey on tap. Much easier and neater to harvest than the traditional hive that we harvested earlier this summer.
Now on to start learning about what to do and setting up the hives for fall and winter. Not bad for the first year as beekeepers!
We finally harvested honey from 1 of our 3 hives. It is a traditional hive and not the flow hive. This is 5 racks. To say we are happy is an understatement. We know we made mistakes along the way this year but what a learning experience it has been. I am going to let the pictures do the talking now.
We planted wildflowers for our bees this year. We had a spot where a mobile home been and there was no grass so that was perfect for them. It turns out that the bees and us love the way it turned out. We are already thinking about what we can add to it next year. I wonder if we can have wildflower yard?
Every so often I go off topic of crochet to my other interests. This is one of those times. We have talked about beekeeping for several years, Finally it seems to be the time. So through out the year I will be sharing the new adventure. This is the bee-ginning.
We decided to try out something new and ordered a Flow hive. But are also going to have a traditional hive.
The hive arrived and here are pictures of it being put together. My grandson is required to do a project for FFA this semester so this was perfect timing. He helped assembly the hive with his dads help. It was interesting to watch them work together and his dad teach him about holding a drill properly, etc. Now my grandson is going to build a couple of brood boxes from the templates.That will be another post along with us getting the bees to go in the hive in April.