I get bee with a little help from my friends

Pictured here is a buddy who happens to be a master beekeeper. While most of the hives around here, including ours, our Langstroth style, he also keeps a few interesting Top Bar style hives, which you can see to his left.

My friend generously took two beautiful honeycombs from an unused Kenyan style hive and dumped them into a five gallon bucket to send home to my family. It’s probably 6 months worth of honey!

He also gave our Langstroth hives a kick start from his own Langstroths by providing 10 full frames of comb + honey to slot into our new hives. Clearly generosity is a characteristic of master beekeepers.

No bump bee installation

Following the general instructions from this wise fellow, I recently installed our two new colonies of bees.

The main (and important) distinction of this fellow’s method versus others is the lack of a “bump” to knock/pour the bees out of their delivery boxes (pictured nearby) into the hive. By avoiding this bump, you can also completely avoid much of the “required” protection gear. I installed our bees, messed around three times pulling frames in/out, and removed the queen boxes all without any more protection than a pair of gloves and long sleeve shirt.

The only modification I added to the video instructions was to slide a board across the opening as I pulled the feeding can out of the delivery box’s top. This kept the majority inside the box while I got the queen installed with her marshmallow. 24 hours later the marshmallow was gone. Great, low stress way to install a new colony!