We really like honey bees. They are enchanting, and we are putting lots of effort into growing our hives. On a recent hot summer’s day, we set out to inspect one of them.
Objective: See if the bees were in need of more living room. If the Hive was running out of space, we would add a new box to the bottom of the hive, allowing the bees to build comb downward.
Bees must be treated with respect. Opening a hive requires preparation and care. We suited up and deployed our ‘smoker’ – smoke calms down bees and renders them less aggressive towards bipedal interlopers.
The Warre hive is arranged in frames upon which bees build their comb. While the hive is open, we sample a few frames and inspect their health. In particular, we are looking for signs that the ‘brood’ is healthy. Brood is the section of the hive where new bees grow.
In this case, we found the hive to be very healthy, but not yet in need of a new box. So we carefully closed it back up.
While opening the hive, we gently pry apart joints where the bees have sealed the structure with their various secretions, including honey. A byproduct of that prying is a small amount of honey, which we devoured instantly! It was outrageously yummy, and we can’t wait to be able to share it with you.