T. Bee's Honey

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"T. Bee's Honey" is bottled from our hives here at LBS. We have several hives of honey bees that we harvest honey from sometime in late July and again toward the end of August.  The crop depends on how favorable the weather has been to support blooming plants and flowers.  The excess honey we are able to take from our hives is extracted from the combs in a spinner and is filtered through a mesh cloth.  The honey is considered "raw", meaning that it hasn't been heated or processed.  The demand for locally grown raw honey is quite high, so our supply never lasts very long. 

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It takes approximately six million flower visits by the bees to make a quart of honey!  Each bee will only collect a 1/12 of a teaspoon of honey in their entire lifetime, so it would take the life's work of 1680 bees to fill a quart jar.  Bees also collect pollen (you can see it on their hair and the white "ball" on their leg in the picture above).  It is their source of protein and some gets mixed in with the honey as it is gathered and stored by the bees.  A person with pollen allergies will slowly build up an immunity by consuming a small amount of honey per day.  This is why local honey helps with your allergies!

Here are some photos of our bee keeping activities:

Inspecting a frame from a hive
This is a frame with capped honey
Removing the inner cover on a hive with my hive tool
Josh Brown in his bee suit. He is getting his smoker ready.
One of our apiaries (bee yard)
Megan Brown wearing her veil
Rooutine inspections are a necessity
The bees use different frames (or parts of a frame) to raise brood and store pollen and nectar
Toby and Megan inspecting a hive
The "baby bees" are capped into cells as they grow
The big long bee in the center is the Queen
There are upwards of 40,000 bees in a colony
The bees in this colony have different jobs, depending on their age
Forager bees coming and going thousands of times per day
Megan Brown with comb we cut out of a house
You can see uncapped larvae and one type of queen cell
Inside this clip is a queen...the other bees want to be wherever she is
A small colony being fed sugar water from a feeder jar
We capture swarms for people and take them home
Here a captured swarm after we get home
Excess honey is stored by bees in a top box called a "super"
When stealing their honey, we blow the bees off first
Getting ready to extract honey from this capped frame
First the wax caps are sliced off
Centrigugal force slings the honey from the comb and comes out the bottom
Then the honey is strained into a bucket

 

Of course, during the sweet corn season we sell our honey at our stands, but year around it's available at Mr. B's Cafe/Global Fashions in downtown Hoopeston.

 

 

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