Friday, April 3, 2015

Jump Right In!

It started with me wanting to check out beekeeping and maybe tag along with some experienced beekeepers this year to see if I even liked it before deciding what to do next. You know… dip my toes in the water. So we attended a few meetings and the next thing you know, we’re at Fleet Farm for maple syrup stuff and their beekeeping items just happened to be on sale! So we bought it. All of it. No, we didn’t clear out their whole selection but we did buy everything we needed for two complete hives except the supers and actual bees.

Diagram of a Langstroth Hive found in a Google image search.
Quick Vocabulary Lesson:
Deep - The large size boxes that make up the base of a bee hive. The traditional Langstroth beehive has two deeps on the bottom. These can also be called the brood boxes or hive bodies and are where the Queen lays eggs and workers raise larvae. Sometimes these are called deep supers but I'll just refer to them as deeps, hive bodies, or the brood chamber.

Super - Sometimes called a honey super, these are the shallow or medium size boxes on top of the two bottom deep boxes. Supers are where the bees store honey. Generally when a hive has 3 or 4 supers it is considered “fully supered” and the hive has reached maximum height. You can put more on but then you'd better have a really sturdy ladder. Technically, a super is any box that's involved in the hive but I'm going to stick to the usage I mentioned here.

At this point I thought that maybe I was still going to wait until next year to swim in the deep end but then A. and I went to another bee meeting and I signed up to buy bees. We decided that there was no time like the present and we should just get started now. Why not?

So there you have it folks. We jumped right in and we’re going to be beekeepers, I've been reading as much as I can, and I’m incredibly excited. Our “girls” (bees) arrive next weekend and there’s a lot to be done before they get here like painting the hives, clearing out the site, and building the hive stands. Also, since we’ll be keeping them at A’s house due to EC’s new beekeeping ordinance being so restrictive, we’ll need to put up an electric fence to keep out the larger honey loving animals known as bears. Guess we’d better get to work! Check in later to see how things are going. I’ll try to keep up with updates.

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