BeeKeepingOne of my Sunday paper route customers was Albert Greenslaw. His home near the Post Office had a back yard filled with bee hives. On a particularly nice fall day, I was collecting and noticed activity in the backyard. The smokers were going, the hive opened and honey being harvested. Of course I was curious. "The smoke quiets the bees," I'm informed, so I step closer and one bee didn't get quiet, having just returned from the field with its leg pouches full. Enraged at what it found, it took aim and hit me just below the left eye. Several days of suffering later, Albert met me and commented how well I tolerated the attack.
Well, I was hooked. I studied all I could find, asked questions, bought a hive, frames, foundation, a hood, a smoker, etc. Put everything in place in the lower lot, under the plum tree. The queen and her swarm arrived in the spring at the post office. In response to a frantic call from Mr. Fraiser, the Postmaster, I arrived and found the screened box on the back loading dock. No fair! The peeps, when delivered can be heard throughout the postoffice, inside, protected from the weather. Perhaps the fact that a number of robber bees were working the outside of the box may have been a factor...
Got everything up and running. Placed the box and released the queen on top of the main frames and closed it all up with an empty super, until the colony was settled. Before harvesting any honey, I joined the Navy and the hive died out. Now that I know how to do it, I bet it would succeed next time.
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