Wednesday, December 3, 2014
A Bee in the Bonnet and Frost on the Fence
Just got in from moving two hives this morning plus one of the stands now that it had been emptied. One hive was extremely heavy to the point that my son and I had to move it a few feet and then set it down for a few seconds, lift, then continue, but we managed. That particular hive was also PISSED about being moved.
To make matters worse the entire world was covered in a very heavy frost this morning which rendered my usual way of blocking the entrances up on the hive we were moving almost impossible. The tape wouldn't stick. We had just got the first hive set in place when one lone bee escaped somehow and took off after us. She didn't even make it 20 feet before dying in the cold.
The second trip however was really exciting.
The cloud cover we have had for the last few days was gone and although the temps still haven't climbed out of the upper 20's the sun was warming the hives up. We set the second hive in place next to the first one and began taking the moving frame off when my son stepped right in front of the first hive we had moved. He was instantly attacked by about a dozen guard bees. No we weren't wearing veils either. He made a "Bee-line" for the truck and jumped in without getting stung but when I jumped in after him he quickly discovered he had a passenger that had stowed away between the hood on his jacket and the watch cap he was wearing.
This is why I been insisting we move the hives at dawn before the sun or the temps get far enough up to get the girls moving. My son learned a valuable lesson that I had told him over and over but he forgot.
Don't step in front of a pissed off hive.
I have to admit though the boy has really stepped up to the plate on this move. Every morning before dawn I am getting him up and we are moving bee hives in the 20 degree temps and until today fairly cold winds. Not one complaint or grumble about it either and I have noticed a definite increase in his strength and stamina too. I couldn't have done this move without his help under these conditions.
At this point I need to go down and level out one more three hive stand and then move the last two hives tomorrow morning. I am going to wait until this afternoon to venture back down there though and give that angry hive some time to cool down. I lifted the last remaining hives a bit and one was really light while one was a bit on the heavy side so the advantage of this move is I now know which hives I need to feed on the next warm day we get. The verdict still isn't in if the first four we moved are even still alive or if we did some damage jostling them around.
I guess we will soon see.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!