Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Anyone at Home?

The winter months can be a restful, but trying, time as a beekeeper. On the one hand, the hive is at rest and there isn't much for me to do. But, on the other hand, I wait and worry. Is anyone in there?





The two larger boxes on the bottom of the stack are the brood boxes.  This is where the queen does her work and new bees emerge from their cells.  From the bottom up, the third box in this stack is the honey super.  It is smaller than the two bottom boxes, but when it is full of honey, it is quite heavy.  



There is a wooden lid between the honey super and the top box.  It provides a small opening for the bees to come through and eat the sugar cakes provided in the upper space.  The opening here has a sticky coating of propolis on the edge.  It looks rather dirty, but this substance is vital to the bees.  They use it to seal up openings/cracks in the hive body.  




These sugar cakes remind me of snow, but are really just measured amounts of water and sugar, patted into a pan and left to dry.  



Interesting how when I placed more sugar in the upper space bees started to emerge.  They seemed both curious about the sugar and annoyed at my presence.  

Needless to say, I left quickly as I was not suited up for any type of work.  

They're alive!!!  



46 comments:

  1. Morning Michell, love the color of the bee boxes, so pretty...Glad they are home, the suger cakes do look like snow....so interesting, Blessings Francine.

    ReplyDelete
  2. How interesting! I am a honey lover, especially that which is locally made by those lovely bees. Thank you for sharing just how it is done.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Learned something new.... So cool

    ReplyDelete
  4. Interesting.......you will have to show us pictures of the honey you get.

    ReplyDelete
  5. hooray! I became a bee watcher last summer....tracking the bees I was seeing. I would love to be a bee keeper, but I must admit I am afraid!

    ReplyDelete
  6. very cool...I love hearing about the whole process! They look healthy and happy!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Yep, good to get away if you weren't dressed for it! I;m amazed that at this time of year the bees knew you were there.

    ReplyDelete
  8. That's what happens when sugar is placed near me!

    ReplyDelete
  9. If you place your ear next to the side of the hive and gently knock on the box you'll be able to hear them buzz on days it's too cold to peek in. A fun bee "fix" :-).

    ReplyDelete
  10. So interesting to me. Thanks for sharing the pics and the good news!

    ReplyDelete
  11. You really explained the whole process so well. I also so love the bright green color of the box. Have a happy week Michelle :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. Yeah! They're alive! And I'm so glad you "got away". Beautiful post. I like the pictures of the hives out by the trees.
    Blessings,
    Betsy

    ReplyDelete
  13. an art and a science to this craft...

    ReplyDelete
  14. Love the color of your hive! It is hard to wait...my hubby has had some disappointments in the past so it is always good to see activities like you see. xo

    ReplyDelete
  15. Hope they continue to have a restful winter!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Yay! I love this post because I am about halfway through "Beekeeping for Dummies" and we just ordered our hive a couple days ago! I actually understood what you said about the brood boxes and honey super haha. I feel like I'm learning! We're excited to become beekeepers :)

    ReplyDelete
  17. I'm so glad they're alive and well.. but you're a good bee-mommy.. so I'm not worried. Thanks for showing us these photos. I'm glad you enjoyed the powwow photos! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

    ReplyDelete
  18. That's good news...although the only part of the process I really understood is that they're alive. As I said, good news!

    ReplyDelete
  19. What joy.

    Still way to afraid of them. Wishing you all a good Wednesday.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Oh honey, bee good to them! Sorry I couldn't help myself! LOL! I know you are! Have a great day!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Interesting! I thought it was snow....glad to have this bit of education

    ReplyDelete
  22. Hi Michelle! I'm so jealous of your hives! I'd love to have some bees, but if I take on ONE MORE THING, my husband is going to have my hide!

    ReplyDelete
  23. You go Queen of the Bees! Love the color of the box too.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Glad they're there... I've always thought it would be interesting to keep bees...

    ReplyDelete
  25. I love honey! I enjoy it on my bagels on almost a daily basis. Yum!

    Your the bee's keeper (i.e. Mommy).

    ReplyDelete
  26. I never knew there was so much to the bee boxes. So interesting.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Yes!! I super love when you post about your bees. So interesting and on my list of things to add to our place. I have been researching and learning for while now, just need to do it. Until then though i happily life vicariously through you. I'm happy they're all good and cant wait to see photos of some honey later.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Learn something new every day- good luck with your bees!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Yay! Now you can quit worrying? :)

    ReplyDelete
  30. How cool! I have always been completely fascinated by bee's. I thought the sugar was snow. Love the color of your box too!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Bee-keeping looks like it is interesting and challenging.

    ReplyDelete
  32. This is a cool post, Michelle. My husband has done bees in his life but not currently. He is always saying we don't have enough bees now days. So glad to see that they are "alive!!!" Thanks for stopping by and saying you love hand me downs or ups. hahahahaha

    ReplyDelete
  33. Hi Michelle
    I love your blog header!
    Bee keeping is something that has always interested me. Our friends had bees on their farm and lots of apple trees which the two produced the most amazing apple honey ♥

    ReplyDelete
  34. Really cool. It must be interesting to keep bees.

    ReplyDelete
  35. An interesting process. Glad they're alive and well in there!

    ReplyDelete
  36. Yea! The bees are alive and well.

    My older son ordered his first hive at Christmas. My brother in law raises bees, and he became fascinated with the idea. He receives his bees in March. He is really excited. We are excited for him.

    The honey that comes from the hive is absolutely delightful.

    Stay warm.

    Velva

    ReplyDelete
  37. Fascinating again. Beekeeping is something that I know absolutely nothing about. Other than what I read today on your blog.

    ReplyDelete
  38. I didn't know that a bee keeper puts sugar in the hive boxes for the bees. I learn something all the time from folks like you -- barbara

    ReplyDelete
  39. I am quite scared of bees...

    ReplyDelete
  40. I learn so many new things!:)
    Thanks for sharing interesting stuff, both text and images.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Good news - they're alive. Better news - you didn't have to find out the hard way !

    ;>)

    ReplyDelete