Saturday, March 14, 2009
I am officially a beekeeper now and not just the photographer. Glenn and I switched roles today as I felt ready to take on the challenge of opening the hive. I tried to keep my nerves under control as I put on my bee hat and gloves. As I puffed smoke into the top of the hive, the sound of a thousand bees buzzing filled the air. Bees are gentle. I had to remind myself of that fact every couple of seconds. And they were. We inspected the top portion of the hive and could not find our old queen. There was a little bit of honey storage but no brood. We decided to remove the queen excluder (separating the top hive from the bottom hive). The bottom portion of the hive was filled with brood and a few open queen cells. Glenn is assuming we have a new queen and she is establishing herself. After I realized the bees were not going to attack me, I started to enjoy watching them work. We even saw a bee doing a “bee dance” which we have yet to see (or recognize) on the outside of the hive.
We also found our bees on our pluot tree today! Its flowers smell like sweet tarts so I am not surprised our bees were able to find it. Glenn is thrilled because our fruit trees have to be cross pollinated.