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The Yard Man

Posted by Tammy Chapman on

Tim was out yesterday working with bees all day.  Getting ready to move hives, 4 moved this morning already. I heard the 4 Wheeler come back yesterday and soon I heard the lawnmower!  Here is my Bee/Yard Man cutting the grass!  LOL!  I had to run to several windows to get a shot of him in his bee suit, cutting grass.  You can see several rows of hives in the background.  The 4 he moved this morning were from the far field.  Getting ready for extraction mode this week and need to keep things close.  The bees were in "MAD" mode this morning after the move.  It was 50' here and Tim thought they would be a little more docile.  NOPE!  They thought he was there to steal their honey and when he finally got to the door he couldn't get in from the swarm following him.  I finally got Bert in the door with no bees on him and got him rubbed down and checked his ears.  Don't know how long it took Tim to finally get the mob down to just a few.  He did his ballerina turns on the front porch for me to check for bees until I saw none and he ducked in quickly!  No bees made it in with him!  GOOD MAN!  But, he did get stung 12 times!  That is with the suit and gloves ON!  It really doesn't seem to bother him.  Don't know how many times/if Bert got stung, but I am guessing I will see the welts on him soon if he did.  Doesn't seem to bother him either, unless they get in his ears!  Tim was using smoke to calm them, but they didn't seem to care!  I should have tried to take video of the "Bee Dance" this morning, but I was too busy trying to help him get bees off and get Bert in from the mayhem.  I have not been stung yet in 3 years.  I would like to keep it that way, but I was pretty worried about the boys this morning.  I even offered to put Nick's suit on and help out.  Tim appreciated the thought, but they would have stung me too much.  I had no gloves and Tim just wears jeans.  I have no idea where the "bee" pants are.  Might be a really long week for Tim if they stay this mad.  Probably won't get all the extraction done this week, but by the end of next week we should be done.  They will still be "field" bees until late October, early November before we move them in for the winter.  Depends on the weather.  They are still foraging now, so Tim has hives that will be extracted this week, and some next week.  The flow is about over, but we want them to forage as long as there is nectar for them.  When we bring them into winter in the loop building, Tim will leave honey in the hives for them and supplement them if needed over the winter.  This is just for food for the winter, as they hibernate at 40' and below.

This has been our best year yet.  Tim has done a wonderful job building hives, grafting queens, and staying on top of disease.  Everything we do here is natural.  We were wiped out last year from disease before winter.  No bees made it into winter storage last year.  LOTS to tell about that, and I will continue this Wednesday about bees and their diseases.  It is a full-time job raising these little wonders!  My Bee Man is off and running again to get the facility set up for extraction.  God Bless Him!

Stay tuned Wednesday for bee diseases and how to keep a hive healthy!  It is a major amount of work if done correctly to keep an apiary successful.  Don't forget it is "Weigh in Wednesday" also!  Still keeping up with the nightly honey!

Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, Stay Sane!

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