Monday, July 18, 2016

Honey Extracting Project

We have some bees here at the farm.  You can read about it here:

We now have 2 hives, each with 5 frames.  An estimate of 80,000 bees or more!  I have noticed that our garden, apple trees and even the clover in the field/yard are blooming and doing so much better this year.  I can't help but think the bees have something to do with that!  

Robert came out and took one of the frames off the hive to extract the honey.  We had a few of the Cloverbud 4-Hrs on hand to "help" - most were full of honey by the time we were done.  

First he had to smoke them - to calm the bees.  It was hard to see in the pictures, but trust me there was a bunch of bees around him.  He took out 1 very full frame.  It was very heavy, we guessed about 60 pounds.  

Just look at that beautiful handiwork!  

Then Robert unplugged the wax caps and put the frames into a hand crank extractor.  He gave each of the kids a few chances to spin them around.  We had several frames so they had many chances (wink).  

The extracted honey did have little pieces of wax and such in it.  If you let the honey sit, that will come to the top.  We did fill a few jars and gave them to the family that helped.  

We let it sit overnight and the next day removed the wax on the top.  We used a 5 gallon paint strainer and ran all of the honey through it - even the wax pieces we removed.   Once strained, we filled jars.  

 (I took this strained wax and put it back out by the hives - the bees cleaned it all up - they loved it)

Robert and Ashley don't want any of the honey, they just want to build up their apiary.  So for us, this is a win/win situation.  This frame yielded over 3 1/2 gallons of honey.  Robert says we will have more to come.  Yay!  Look for some honey at the Ringle Harvest Day - we (Robert, Ashley, Al & I) are donating some for the 4-H to sell.  All the kids have to do is come over and help with the next extracting and bottling.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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