Thursday, June 11, 2009

Extreme (ly Stupid) Beekeeping

This is what happens when you get other people's bees taken care of, but not your own, and wake up at 2:30 in the morning and realize that when you did get a break in the pouring rain yesterday you forgot to run out and add the second hive body to your new hive, and they say it is supposed to really rain today and you know that after a couple days of rain, a too cramped hive might make a run for it and swarm, and it's already starting to lightning and if you wait until daylight it's going to be pouring....

I continue to prove that my main purpose in life is to be an example of how not to do things. I obviously lived to tell about it or I wouldn't be sharing this story, so at this point you can pretty much guess what happened. I got up around 3:30, suited up, grabbed the large super, a bee brush and a headlamp and headed out into the approaching storm.

I wished I'd had a recorder as I walked out to the Frog Pond. Between the frogs and the crickets and the distant (and closer) rumblings of thunder, it was actually sort of fun to be out hiking in the dark. The lightning was beautiful (and illuminating), but I'll admit, just a tad too close for comfort.

I knew the bees would not be happy about being awakened in the middle of the night, but tried to explain it to them all "friendly-like". They didn't buy it one bit. However, I was able to quickly open the hive, brush the cluster of bees from the inner cover, set the new hive body down, replace the cover and the lid and beat it out of there. Several bees escorted me back to the barn and I'm not completely sure that one or two didn't make it all the way to the porch.



All's well that ends well though. Not only do my bees have a little more room this morning (with some honey drizzled on the frames to encourage them to go up and check it out), but other than some heavy storms that blew through before dawn, I managed to jinx off the all-day rain that was predicted and the trusses for the workshop/studio are here and they've been able to work all morning.


Things are pretty noisy up there, so let's return to the pond.



Deep breath. Can you hear the red winged blackbirds calling from the adult cattails?



(The old man's starting to look old :-/).


I lucked into some really nice sheep shots as I was walking back as well.

Tomorrow.

10 comments:

Denise said...

Oh goodness, my brain isn't totally in gear today so just skimmed to see I wasn't the only sleepless person last night. I think I mentioned the bee keeper I ran into recently. I want to start a hive sometime but need to research more. He was clear he wasn't into the "academic" part of raising bees. So it would be very interesting to learn more from him. Just like I need something else to fuss over? I feel strongly that honeybees are so essential to the well being of this planet. Your a good Mom to the bees too. I loved the horse picture. Oh my so Kentucky-esque...you actually make me homesick. Bless you!

Joanna@BooneDocksWilcox said...

Your property is so beautiful. I don't know a thing about beekeeping but you go girl!

DayPhoto said...

A true farmer/rancher/sheepherder you are. The run into the night, sometimes in nightclothes to save one of the animals is what caring is all about.

You go girl!

Linda
http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com

Alice said...

I think your hives have little guar-bee-ian angels watching over them. This is the second time you have saved them from distress. Now don't worry, bee happy.

Nancy K. said...

Hey! At least you got the job done. I probably would have layed in bed thinking about it all night...

Did I ever mention my bee phobia?

;-)

melanie said...

Wow! That might be where my DH draws the line...beekeeping in the wee hours...But a good thing to know about the raining and swarming...will tuck that tidbit away.

Barbara's Spot on the Blog said...

I taught software to adults for years and I would always give great advice about don't do this because... Then one day someone asked how I knew how to fix all the mistakes.... Because I made them all!
Nice bee hives. We've had rain too and my newly installed hives haven't had too many rain-less days to get outside either.

Garry DesMetis said...

Chickens... and now bees.... OK.... The pond is for the frogs eh. Big thing out here frogs. Legs. People really do eat them and like them too....

thecrazysheeplady said...

Our frogs are our friends and we enjoy watching and listening to them, so yes, the pond is for them...but in turn, for us as well.

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

Love that bottom photo, but glad I don't have that mosquito nursery at my place!

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