Wednesday, January 21, 2015

I've got hives !!!!!!!

One of the cool things about getting into beekeeping are the endless puns available in everyday conversation.  My favorite is "Honey don't stop" which is the title of someone's bee keeping blog.

I've been quite busy the last couple weeks working on building the hives.  Originally, when I decided to try beekeeping it was going to be with one or maybe two hives at the most.  As with all my compulsive exploits, I end up getting completely immersed into whatever has captured my attention.  I'd had to admit it's a mental thing but not something I would ever change about myself.  I'm more aware of this condition now and can keep it ... kind of ... in control.  But researching bees has drawn me in deeper than usual and I can see where this will eventually end.  It's a lot of fun so far.  Building things out of wood is deeply gratifying and learning how to make tight finger joints in the boxes and learning many new woodworking skills has been a blast.

The one or two hives I originally envisioned has expanded to 5-6 hives to start with.  They're about 90% complete.  The only thing I bought were  frames which I still need to assemble.  In the future fabricating my own frames is probable.  My Langston hives will feature screened bottom boards to combat mites as well as a cool landing pad for the bees on the angle that they naturally approach the entrance with the tail low.  So when a bee is coming in for a landing heavy with pollen and nectar,  it will be greeted with an excellent landing pad angled just right.  I've also designed a really nice ant proof stand for the hives that places them about 2' above the ground.  Most of the design is not something I can take credit for but a few things are.  I certainly don't want ants to overrun our hives.  I've heard from many that ants can chase bees off.

At the last Tampa Beekeepers association meeting we signed up to take a turn volunteering at the State Fair next month.  Ought to be interesting.

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