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 Post subject: To bee or not to bee....
PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:38 pm 
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Well, we decided to go for it! We now have our first hive! Installed yesterday, and lots of pollen laden bees entering the hive today.....


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Transferring the frames.JPG [ 132.58 KiB | Viewed 8705 times ]

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 4:33 pm 
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:clap:

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 5:01 pm 
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May the force bee with you! :bash:

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 8:11 pm 
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Bee careful too :grin:

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:02 pm 
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Wow....our first honey harvest!! What a fascinating animal the bee is.....watching what they do in a more or less empty box is amazing!

So, we put a super on top of the brood box at the end of December and every now and then went to admire the bees handiwork. The smell of the honey was divine! Finally we are ready to put the second super on, but harvested a frame first.

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We are using a drainage system, and it seems to be quite efficient for just harvesting one frame at a time. After scraping the capping, we just let the honey drain through a hole in the top bucket, through a filter, and into the bottom bucket. Later today we will jar it!

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It smells and tastes amazing :clap:

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:46 pm 
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What have you got between the top and bottom bucket? We have the same setup but fixed a wire kitchen strainer into the bottom bucket lid for straining and it does a great job. I will get it from Dad's and grab some photos of it.

I would be interested to see if you do a frame that way and a frame the way I do it (cut out the entire comb and crush it) how much difference in honey volume you get and then how much faster it is refilled and capped off if you put them both back in a full box at the same time.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:55 pm 
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Hi Burnsy, we have a filter that the scrapings and honey drop into. We would be interested in seeing a photo of yours. 8-)

We decided to let the honey drain, rather than crush it, so we can put the frame back in the super with wax and honey still on it for the bees to tidy and rebuild rather than starting from scratch. Though your way would get more honey (we give some of ours back) we don't want to make too much hard work for us or the bees with the and this seems to provide us with plenty of honey for personal use!

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:12 pm 
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Yummy, there looks to be a lot of honey in that bucket from one frame :thumb:

I will get some photos next time I get it out.

Cheers,
Mike


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 10:34 pm 
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Hey Mike, the bucket is being tipped to get the honey out of the tap! We just finished all the bottling though, and are really happy with the result. On Sunday we put a second frame in and scraped a bit more thoroughly than with the first frame, so got a fair bit more honey from it. All up we put over 2 litres in jars tonight from those two frames. I think if we had scraped the first one more we would have had 2.5 litres.

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We have no idea how that compares to others, but we are very happy! It will take us a while to get through that much honey!!
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Honey in jars.JPG
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Honey all jarred up, minus a large one we have given away already!!

Mike, do you have bees at your school? We are getting some at my school in spring and it would be great to chat to someone who has 'been there done that'!!
Deb and Mack

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 8:20 am 
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Funny how you don't think of something so simple as this method. I'll have to give it a try and save the girls some work.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 12:16 am 
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How were you doing it rmcpb??

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 8:22 am 
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Just crush and strain.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 27, 2013 10:06 am 
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Harvested two more frames, plus cleaned the capping wax this time. It provided a small, but very nice piece of wax!

Attachment:
Honey and wax harvest.JPG
Honey and wax harvest.JPG [ 82.66 KiB | Viewed 8246 times ]


It is amazing that in only a month the colour and taste of the honey is different! This latest harvest is not as dark as the first one, when we had some jarrah flowering, but it is still delicious.
Attachment:
Two honey samples.JPG
Two honey samples.JPG [ 66.03 KiB | Viewed 8246 times ]


Our plan is to not harvest anymore now over winter- we don't want to leave them in short supply. Being novice beekeepers we are not really sure how it all goes over the winter period, so we will watch and see how they go. We are so glad we decided to get into bees, it has been really fascinating!

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 27, 2013 9:42 pm 
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So what plans do you have for the wax?

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 27, 2013 11:17 pm 
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Peasants wrote:
Mike, do you have bees at your school? We are getting some at my school in spring and it would be great to chat to someone who has 'been there done that'!!
Deb and Mack


No to many issues with Anaphalactic kids, risk is to great. I do take a frame in and share it with my year sevens each year. They start out all gung hoe and after about half an hour they all feel sick and then we feed it to the other three classes in the senior block. Last year there was still a kilo of honey left for the kitchen after 100 odd kids had had a go at a frame.

It is a great experience for them.

Last year I gave a frame to my neighbour who was around 85. He and his wife had never had honey in a comb before and he was so excited. I told him what to do and he crushed and strained it himself then returned the frame. The children in the family love getting involved with crushing and straining because it is so hands on.


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