First Honey Super

On 15 July the Apiguard treatment was finished (the bees cleaned out the tray) and my friend, neighbor and fellow Transitioner Andrea helped me put the first honey super onto the hive.

These are the bees in the top box: great numbers and all looking healthy. Frames and frames heavy with honey. Eggs too!

Andrea felt very brave, but once she saw how docile the bees are she breathed more easily. It was very helpful having help on this one. I had treated the honey super frames – not drawn out, so no comb on it yet – with Honey Bee Healthy, a mix of volatile oils that they like, diluted in sugar water. This is to entice to come into “the upstairs food pantry”. This meant, however, that I couldn’t bring that box along and leave it there in the open while I did the inspection and scraped away the excess comb. It would have attracted the bees, my own and others, and other unwanted insects. So once I was ready Andrea went to get it from our screened porch for me.  Thank you!

When we were done and came back to the house Andrea, who was wearing the vest with attached veil, heard something buzzing inside her suit! It certainly sounded like a bee. I quickly helped her remove the vest.  I have had that “bee in my clothes”  experience: it’s quite enervating! But she was very calm. It turned out to be a giant drone – drones don’t sting. Strange, how it got there, that vest seems hermetically sealed…

It was certainly an unforgettable first bee experience for Andrea!

Harvest honey comb

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