Delirious in Honey, Honey, Honey, Honey

Amy's capped honey

Reader, as you may know, I spend a good deal of my time these days removing bees from houses. I usually schedule only one of these removals each week because it seems to take me a week to deal with all the attending ramifications:

  • return to the home at night or unbelievably early in the morning to remove the bees
  • invest some time in customer and community relations regarding a general uneasiness about all the bees still flying around (really, the site of these removals draws quite a crowd of neighbors)
  • vacuum the bees that clustered overnight at their old entry site
  • situate the bees in one of my beeyards,
  • clean EVERYTHING of honey
  • crush the honey-containing comb and filter the fresh, warm honey
  • clean EVERYTHING of honey
  • rinse the wax from which the honey dripped
  • render pure and glorious-smelling beeswax from all the comb we remove from the home…including the wax from which the honey dripped
  • clean EVERYTHING of honey
  • unpack my car
  • clean all the equipment of honey
  • haul all that stuff to the basement
  • clean my car of honey and bees
  • wash honey from all the clothes and bee suits
  • pack it all nicely honey-free for the next removal

All of this is to say that I’ve had less time these past weeks to enjoy my visits to my other beeyards. And here we are at the time of year when we harvest the spring honey.

I harvested some early capped frames from three beeyards…I sort of like doing this in stages as the summer progresses rather than doing it all at once. I invite you over to Amy’s blog to see some pictures of and to read about our first honey harvest.

I’ll tell you that I seldom suit all the way up, but when you rummage through a hive in order to rob it of its stores, the bees are not at all pleased.


Ya Do What Ya Gotta Do

Just when I posted that this is a difficult time of year for removing bees from a structure, I get a call from a guy doing a renovation project on a historic home in Kentucky. They’ve got a huge, 15-year-old hive in the ceiling of the old porch, and they’re ready to tear into it now…they can’t hold the entire project off until spring.

There’s already a lift on site. And there are contractors waiting to take the porch apart and put it back together again. And the homeowner has volunteered to be my assistant.

So, I guess I’ll do it. If I don’t agree to remove these bees, they’ll have no choice but to open the cavity and exterminate them. And then we’ll lose all the honey and the comb as well. So, I told the guy I’d do it.

Perhaps I can add the bees to one of my existing hives and see if they’ll live through the winter. I’ll save the comb I collect from the removal and use it in a new hive next spring.

I’ve assessed the situation, and I’ve answered, “Yes.” Which is my new motto (except when I answer, “No”…which often results in just as much fun as “Yes”).