Well, we just completed our first attempt at raising honeybees. The bees are in their hives for the night and hopefully they’ll stay there and we’ll get honey soon. We bought three hives worth of our new little friends from a company in Watertown, WI called Dadant. A few months ago we found an ad on Craigslist giving away their used bee boxes. We went out there and picked up a few and then this morning we bought the rest of the supplies that we didn’t have. The only thing that we salvaged from the Craigslist bee boxes were the supers (middle boxes). We had to buy the cover, a bottom piece as well as the feeder piece and the inside trays. Once we put all the pieces together (which wasn’t too hard…only a few nails) then we had to prime and paint them…only the outside of the boxes. Now, the scary part begins where we actually have to take them out of their boxes and into their new home! After having a few nights of watching YouTube videos on bees we’re hoping we’re prepared for this. We read that in order to keep the bees calm you spritz them with sugar-water. Supplies:
- Hives: Cover, Bottom, Supers (middle boxes), Trays
- Feeding tray
- Pallet to put the finished hives on
- Bee Hat/gloves
- Spray Bottle containing sugar-water
- Bee brush
We lightly sprayed the bees down with sugar-water and knocked them down to access the queen. When we opened the box there was an even smaller box with a cork in it that held the queen. We took a mini marshmallow and put it where the cork was. This way hopefully they’ll be used to their new home by the time they’ve eaten through the marshmallow thereby letting the queen out. It was unreal seeing so many bees in one place when literally started dumping them into their new home.
We’ve all heard about angry bees but these bees were very calm and after a few minutes being around them all our fears for the situation subsided. Well, we’ve got the bees in there and we’ll see how it goes. We are so excited for this to work and to try some fresh local honey from our own honeybees!
I hope this will bee a honey of an experience for Mauledbydesign!
You guys are awesome!!! Love to follow your blog!
I wanted to facetime with you to see your bees but had some other family distractions. Did you paint your boxes?
Congratulations, I hope it goes
Well for you. You should know that the first year, all of he honey is for the bees, they’ll need it to survive the winter. But the second year, if all goes well weather-wise, you should be able to harvest a super or more from each hive. Good luck!
So many things we have to learn! Hopefully the bees survive their first wisconsin winter. Then it’s honey time!
How exciting! The fact that you want to produce it “yourself” (with the aid of bees) is admirable. I wish I lived down the road from you… you do so many things that I want to do! 🙂