19 June 2014

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When I saw this glove, I knew I had missed the collection of the bee boxes – sorry about that.  But I did get a lot more of the honey processing.
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Austin showed off the comb of a box of wild bees he’d caught.  He didn’t have honey trays for the box, so he just used sheets of cardboard and they built this big comb.
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He opened up to this cell of pollen – which he then made me chew because he was sure it would be good for my allergies.  Not as tasty as honey.  Not close.  {{ gag }}
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This is a honey tray – full of honey.
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This is Akka using a “hive tool” to scrape the caps off the comb.
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The trays then go into this extractor – see how 2 trays are in and where a 3rd tray would go?   The trays are spun around by gears attached to that handle..     The honey is extracted by centrifugal force, running down to the bottom of this smooth-sided cylinder.  There is a tap at the bottom.
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This is a bee box with five trays in it that still need spinning.
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After all the spinning the wax scrapings needed to be squeezed in cheesecloth to get the honey from them.   That was done mostly by Austin’s brother Jack.  But my hands were all a’honey, too.   Then we took the basin out for the bees to clean.   Some of the poor bees stuck to the honey like flypaper and drowned.   By the time I got this photo, the clean up was nearly done.    We are “pre-cleaning” the extractor the same way, too.
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Nearby are some of the bee boxes in situ.   We have bee boxes in 4 spots on the property that I can think of.
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Our honey haul this time was 145 pounds of it – three and a half breakfast cracker tubs.
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Yumminess.
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UNDOING OVERBREDING
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I’m seeing chickens in our YARD which is unusual.  The half-jungly (half-wild) birds that Austin has bred are just a whole lot smarter than the imported hybrids.  Many have found a way over the fence and spend the day scratching for food in the grass.   Whenever I try to get a photo, they head right back to the chicken house, as if to say “all right, all right, we’ll go home”
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But they don’t go in…. they go by the fence, where their entrapped brethren can look on in envy.
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FROM THE BOTTOM OF THE INCUBATOR
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Nothing much new here – more hatching chicks.   Austin has 10 dozen babies to sell this weekend.
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FAREWELL
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Austin got my camera and was snapping sunsets like crazy one evening.   Though we had not heard yet, I wonder if it was related to the passing of our dear 92 year old friend Ludi back in Maine.   Ludi visited us 4 times at the farm.  She was just here last December, and it is hard to believe she is gone.   Here is a photo of her from her last October – getting to know a new friend .
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We love you, Ludi – miss you like crazy – and hope to meet again.
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8 thoughts on “19 June 2014

  1. Can’t wait to move there to buy your honey and some chicks. First will have to get Austin to come over and show me where to put in the terraces and the dam.

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