the big event of april
the bees arrived on Sunday the 14th. the hardware store ordered them for me along with everyone else. they arrived on a flat bed truck from a town about 3 hours away. i picked them up in the afternoon. one small, screened crate with a hum. they were healthy and I’d say happy but I don’t yet know what a ‘happy’ bee sounds like. they were calm. cluster round the queen and sucking juice from the can. i put them in a large cardboard box, closed the flaps and placed it in the back of my jeep. we had a 3 minute drive ahead of us and I didn’t want them blustered by wind. i left them on the floor of the garage until installation time.
the entire household was fascinated by this event. all came out to participate and watch. big JR was suited as he had a childhood trauma to overcome. little JR was not and didn’t seemed concerned. i followed instructions and suited up. the bees hummed along in their crate on a milk crate in front of the hive.
after opening the hive and removing about 10 bars i placed the follower board at position 13. i planned on leaving 12 bars for the bees to work on. i left bars on the back half of the hive as a work surface. i proceeded as most bee loading videos instruct you almost without incidence. slam the crate on the ground. pry the can out of the crate. remove the queen cage. check her health. add the marshmallow. hang the cage from the third bar. dump the crate of bees into the hive. close up hive. seems easy enough.