I started beekeeping. I held off on blogging about it for a while because I don’t blog about beekeeping. Then, I realized that it’s my blog. I can change the rules whenever I want. So now I’m beekeeping and blogging about it.
I was going to start beekeeping in the spring like everyone else by purchasing a nuc or package of bees from a commercial beekeeper. But some lady that does backyard beekeeping with a colony of bees that she didn’t like posted this established colony on the Facebook market place. They were hot bees. She was very open about it in the ad. She was so eager to get rid of them that she took a considerable price drop in the negotiation. I managed to get an entire colony with more than ten frames of drawn comb and a laying queen for the same price that five frame nucs with virgin queens sell for.
So on December 15th, I brought home a deep brood box and a shallow super full of bees. They were angry and I was as proud as a father holding one of those ugly new born babies with that hideous red crying face and the misshapen head. They had been stripped of pretty much all their honey by the previous owner and I didn’t believe they had a chance at surviving the winter without feeding them. So I fed them through the winter and they are now my angry springtime bees.
Requeening is an option for calming them down but I’m hesitant to do it. The current queen lays eggs like they’re going out of style. Everything I read about hot bees says they work harder and are more resistant to mites and beetles. From what I’ve seen in the few months I’ve had them, I have to agree.
So that’s where I am. Still trying to decide if it’s worth it to get my bee suit covered in angry bees every time I open the hive just for the assurance that they have a better chance of survival than the docile Italians that commercial beekeepers are producing.