Monthly Archives: August 2014

Aug 30 2014

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Moving the yards out to the late canola fields has not only paid back in honey but also brood.

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Nearly all my third round yards are set, after working through the yards we set out some feed

Beekeeping during the day, combining til dusk

Beekeeping during the day, combining til dusk.  The straw finally came dry enough to thrash about eight , we combined the wet bins full again, keeping the grain drier going

 

Aug 29 2014

Over this past week I have been commuting to work.  We parked the trailer at the lake this past week, getting some camping in before the madness of Labour day hit.  I did not get much camping in, but Sandy and the kids had a great week on the beach!

Over this past week I have been commuting to work. We parked the trailer at the lake this past week, getting some camping in before the madness of Labour day hit. I did not get much camping in, but Sandy and the kids had a great week on the beach!  I was able to catch the last bit of the camp fire before bed time! lol

Soon as we got the chance we sent the combines to the field.  A harvest crew of six working full out to get as much crop before the next rain hit...  Adam fired the drier and the plan is to run it 24 hrs until the crop either turns dry or we finish.  Today we were hit with hail... only one field on the farm, but it took 50%...

Soon as we got the chance we sent the harvest crew to the field. All hands on deck, a harvest crew of six working full out to get as much crop before the next rain hit… Adam fired the drier and the plan is to run it 24 hrs until the crop either turns dry or we finish. Today we were hit with hail… only one field on the farm, but it took 50%… 

Aug 28 2014

Shaking out the bees in yards with no honey stored

Shaking out the bees in yards with no honey stored

Yesterday I pulled the pin and everything is being stripped off to prepare for fall.  The honey house has caught up and the amount of extracting is down to about two days of collecting.  I started laying off my staff yesterday and by tomorrow, I go from seven employees to one…  I laid my guys off because the work ran out, and my work load chugs along exactly the same!  We had gotten a pile of work done these last two months!  By the sounds of it they all want a job next summer.

Nectar is still flowing in on all my yards. Any nectar brought back now will make for great winter

Inserting escapes

Inserting escapes

food.  Looks like I will bring in a good truck and a half of third pull.  Some of my yards packed the late flow into my boxes!  Other yards were slower so we shook the boxes out and set them aside to be robbed out and collected the next morning.  I have started open feeding as we work through the yards.  I plan on open feeding my hives for another week until I get all my boxes in and extracted.  Pails go on second week of September to bulk these hives up.  As we work through the yards, I do a brief brood inspection on each hive to ensure it’s viability.  My hives look to be in great shape.  I am seeing the results of all the new queen stock I put into the apiary.  My swarming losses are very low as compared to other years and my nests are wall to wall with brood.  I think this queen replacement strategy will be adopted from now on.  Also I have worked my but off to keep these bees on flowers all season long, and as on now not a single yard sits without having access to natural forage.  I think this is also paying off in dividends.

It feels good to get back into the nest.  It looks like the bees could of cared less if I was around for the last two months or not!!  lol

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Aug 25 2014

This afternoon (after it kinda warmed...) we came across two of my Buckwheat yards while collecting honey.   It looks like my Buckwheat fields were flowing!

This afternoon (after it kinda warmed…) we dodged the rain shower while collecting honey and came across two of my buckwheat yards. It looks like my Buckwheat fields were flowing!

The cold wet weather we have had over the last four days has knocked the spirit of the honey flow out of me and has gotten me thinking of shutting things down and preparing for winter.  My syrup delivery will be here Wednesday and I plan starting to feed as soon as I strip everything off the hives.  If the warmth and sun come back soon, I anticipate the continued alfalfa and buckwheat flow, but everything away from that will start getting open fed syrup until I start with the pails later into September.  The honey house is pulling out less and less everyday now, 9 barrels today making 210 barrels to date.  Labour day approaches and my crew leaves for school after this week of work.  Most of everything will be pulled and extracted so they will leave with the honey farm in pretty good shape.  Feeding will be busy but manageable for two of us.  I am looking forward to the slow down as fall approaches.

Aug 24 2014

One of my beeyard land owners sent me this pic of my hives, wondering, what the heck is with the covers!! lol The covers do look odd, but they work perfectly.

One of my beeyard land owners sent me this pic of my hives, wondering, what the heck is with the covers!! lol
The covers do look odd, but since I started using them I have had zero problems with robbing.

Cleaning this machine has taken the place of my weekly skimming of my tanks.  But no complaint here.

Cleaning this machine has taken the place of my weekly skimming of my tanks. But no complaint here.

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Aug 23 2014

Adam sent three swathers out to three corners of the farm cutting canola.  Today they met up in the last field catching us up for the time being.  And now its raining... perfect canola cutting weather!

Early last week Adam sent three swathers out to three corners of the farm cutting canola. After a week of long field hours the harvest crew met up today catching us up for the time being. And now its raining… perfect canola cutting weather!

Geoff looking down the tail pipe of his bird during his walk around. His words exactly "I'm trying to figure out what that round thing does..." LOL !

Geoff looking down the tail pipe of his Airbus during his walk around before making a flight from Toronto to Calgary. 
His words exactly “I’m trying to figure out what that round thing does…” LOL !

Aug 22 2014

Setting escapes in the rain... my yard crew drew straws today to decide who joined me in the yards.  lol We set one box back as the alfalfa had plugged these boxes and I am anticipating the flow to continue soon as the sun returns.

Setting escapes in the rain… my yard crew was thrilled to work the yards today… Good thing it’s Friday!! lol
We set one box back as the alfalfa had plugged these boxes and I am anticipating the flow to continue soon as the sun returns.

Taking advantage of this cool wet weather and cutting down all of our maturing canola.

Taking advantage of this cool wet weather and cutting down all of our maturing canola.  We have three swathers running to get it all down 

Aug 20 2014

This pic was sent to me... my yard crew had gotten rained out this afternoon so I sent them back to the honeyhouse to stack boxes and fill barrels... and "no", you can't have the barrel of honey because you filled it! lol

This pic was sent to me… my yard crew had been rained out this afternoon so I sent them back to the honeyhouse to stack boxes and fill barrels… and “no”, you can’t have the barrel of honey because you filled it! lol