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Friday, June 09, 2006

Bee Season [UPDATED WITH PHOTOS]

Truth be told, with the exception of winter, it's always bee season.  By this I mean that for a beekeeper (amateur or otherwise) there is always something to be done to help the bees do what they want to do naturally.   For the most part that means rearranging the frames inside the hives to make it more convenient for the queen to lay her eggs... and creating more space for the workers to store the nectar that will become the honey.

In fact, even winter is bee season around here because frames and hives need to be built and/or repaired.

But right now is a really busy time with my bees because we are just coming off a big bloom of several different kinds of flowers here in Gush Etzion and the bees should be almost out of room to store nectar and honey.  So instead of doing a photo Friday today Gilad and I are going to be out rearranging frames... adding another couple of honey supers...  and maybe even stealing a taste of comb honey for Shabbat.

Update:  OK, we didn't steal any honey, but Gilad and I did a good afternoon's work.

Here is my able assistant getting ready to help me open one of the hives:
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Once a hive is opened we have to work gently but quickly so as to cause the minimum of disturbance to the bees.
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This is a frame of newly capped honey.  Most of the frames look like this now.  But because there is still room for the bees to store more honey towards the bottom and edges of the frame, I'm going to wait a week or two before taking any of them out and extracting the honey:
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Shabbat Shalom!

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Posted by David Bogner on June 9, 2006 | Permalink

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Good luck with that. Shabbat Shalom.

Posted by: Essie | Jun 9, 2006 4:33:08 PM

Shabbat Shalom and kisses to all the Trepps.

Posted by: val | Jun 9, 2006 5:52:50 PM

"Here is my able assistant.." I was going to say that your diet must REALLY be going well. Wow you really slimmed down to a boy of your youth!

Posted by: jaime | Jun 9, 2006 6:46:51 PM

When I was a child, I used to watch an animated series about bees... and ever since then, took to bees kind of personally. It must be very fascinating, interacting with them like that, watching them as if they were tiny little people with their own community. Shabbat shalom!

Posted by: Irina | Jun 9, 2006 11:32:53 PM

Doesn't anyone in your family find the whole bee-keeping deal just a little bit frightnening?

Posted by: tnspr569 | Jun 10, 2006 12:55:27 AM

Nah... this is tame compared to his other interests/hobbies!!! bwaahahahahhahahah (evil laugh!)

Posted by: val | Jun 10, 2006 6:56:20 AM

David, I love the bee updates! I just think that is so fascinating. When I see bees around Jerusalem, I think of your family. ;-) It's really cool that you and Gilad do these father/son things together!

Posted by: John | Jun 10, 2006 9:20:04 AM

Yeah, I also think of David whenever I see a bee now.

This is such a great education and practical skill for Gilad and Ariella. Knowing how to do something immediately useful, especially in nature -- for something like producing food to put on one's own table -- is very rare these days. Not just among kids but adults, too.

Have a shavua tov, Honey Man.

Posted by: sarah | Jun 10, 2006 9:11:19 PM

Essie... thanks.

Val... You mean like my other hobby; dynamite juggling? :-)

Irina... I can watch them for hours going in and out of the hive and dancing for one another to explain how to get to the best nectar sources.

tnspr569... Yes. My wife. So she stays home and just enjoys the honey.

Jah... Let's not forget Ariella. They both help me with the bees and actually fight over who is going to come out to the hives on any given day.

Sarah... The next step is to show them how to milk a cow. ;-)

Posted by: treppenwitz | Jun 12, 2006 1:52:55 PM

Oh, a bee post! Thanks! I love your bee posts! Please say hi to the bees for me.

Posted by: Rahel | Jun 13, 2006 2:56:26 PM

Rahel... Consider it done

Posted by: treppenwitz | Jun 13, 2006 3:03:00 PM

hi I just had a quick question I found an insect that looked kind of like a bee and a hummingbird mixed it was yellow and red had a hummingbird type tail and wings, one of those long tongue things to suck up nectar and strangely enough a beak. But it also had 6 legs and what appeared to have a stinger. Do you know what this may be???

Posted by: Jennifer | Jul 17, 2006 1:46:58 AM

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