Whoops. Forgot about the blog again.
Right. Where were we?
Last time, I was just about to put a rapid clearer board on my hive, between the main hive and the super, in order to clear the super of bees. This basically allows the bees to come down out of the super but not to go back up, and it was remarkably effective. When I went to pick up the super a couple of days later, I only had to shake half a dozen bees out.
Then I was faced with the problem of extraction. If I had a whole stack of supers, then the best thing to do would be to borrow the local beekeeper group’s centrifuge. However, as I only had a few measly frames in the middle of a single super, it wasn’t worth it, and the best way turned out to be to simply scrape everything off and put it through a double sieve to separate the honey from the wax. During the process, I learnt the first rule of honey harvesting: the bloody stuff goes EVERYWHERE. And, of course, it is very sticky.
Still, here’s what I managed to scrape off:
and here’s what it looked like while I was straining it:
And this is what I ended up with:
So enough for a few jars, anyway, which was all I was aiming at this year (he says). And here’s the wax:
Having done all that, I put the super, still dripping honey, back on top of the hive. This time, however, I put it ABOVE the crown board so they didn’t think it’s part of the hive. That way, the bees will clean it out and take the honey back down into the main brood box.
Once that’s done, I can think about preparing for winter – a little later than I should have done. Just like last year. I really need to be more organised in 2015.