Saturday, August 18, 2012

A Bountiful Harvest

I knew the bees in my backyard were going to bless me with some honey this year. I've seen it on the hive, but wanted to wait until my wife's parents came in to watch me / help. The weekend of 8/18 they came to town and I did the extraction. Here are some pictures with commentary.

I ended up pulling off about 25 frames, a mix of medium and shallows.

I love the way the cappings just fall off in sheets when I cut them.

Honey coming out into my double filter setup.

It was a real dark amber color. There was so much of it I had to drain some out into bottles in the middle of extracting things!!

There were a lot of cappings. I made a mistake of using my wife's good potato masher, and we wanted mashed potatoes the next night...

Here I'm draining the cappings.

All in all I got around 64 pounds by my calculations! I use Ball jars for my honey, and quickly ran out of what I had on hand. I had to use quart and half-gallon jars as temporary holding jars until I could buy more! The bees weren't bad, but I did get 2 stings during the taking of the honey (from the Brown hive).

Setting out the extractor and the cappings for the bees to reclaim.

Since my wife's parents were here, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to take them out back to view the hives.

I told them to put on something with long sleeves, and got them set up with simple veils.

We decided to check out a nuc, since there aren't that many bees. But this is one of my favorite nucs, and there were quite a few bees to see.

Bob was really interested in the bees. He keeps a type of aquarium fish (as a breeder and hobbyist). While he was here for a week, he read a bunch of my beekeeping magazines and books, and asked a lot of good questions. He also helped a lot with the honey harvest.

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