Things are buzzing

25 years ago when our son was 13 I was looking for something for us to do together.  Ended up we got 2 bee hives.  We had bees for 3 years then mites hit and we didn’t re-queen.  We did it all through a book – Bee Keeping for Dummies.  As our son said, “They tell you there are 50,000 bees in a hive but it really doesn’t mean much until the first time you crack a hive.  It was really a neat thing to do.  I kept the old hives in the barn.

 Yesterday 5-22-17 I looked out a window and there was a cloud of bees around the pear tree.  Ten minutes later I spotted a swarm about 15 feet up in the tree.  I went to the barn and found enough parts to have 1 hive.  I cut the swarm down and ended up scooping bees up with my hands and putting them in the hive.  Later that afternoon I saw another swarm across the road.  I didn’t have any more hive insides (frames) so I called a beekeeper I know and he came and got the swarm.  Today I was outside and I saw another cloud of bees going across the yard.  I followed them for about 100 yards.  They swarmed on a 1/2 inch branch in a shrub at the edge of the woods.  I called the beekeeper and got some frames.  I snipped the branch and shook the bees into a hive.  We now have 2 hives under the apple trees.  I am pumped.  We  all read about bees declining and now I can take care of these 2 hives.  If you order bees they cost around $125, so we saved some money.  Attached is a picture of the last swarm.  Click on it, you can actually see the bees.




Now – an update.  On Thursday 5-25-17 I saw another swarm across the road in a Autumn Olive bush.  I called the beekeeper and he came and got it.  On Friday I found another swarm in the same bush.  We had gone to a beekeeping supply house on Wednesday and I had bought foundation so I could make up some frames (insides) of a hive.  I didn’t have a bottom or cover so I put them together in about 45 minutes.  Unfortunately they look like it.  Anyways I got the swarm and we now have 3 hives.  Today 5-31-17 I was outside and suddenly I was in a cloud of bees.  They were actually bouncing off me.  I followed them around the pond and they eventually swarmed in a cedar tree.  I called the beekeeper and he came and got it.  I was talking to another beekeeper who has 50+ hives.  He said he had heard of people who found a couple of swarms in one year in the same area and knew of one person who had found 3.  I have found 6!  It’s been a interesting week and half.  The first 2 hives are doing great.  The 3rd hive does not have near the activity going on.  I will open up this week end and see how things are inside.

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