Monday, August 18, 2008


This post is not about my #1 Honey who I am missing something terrible.

Yes, something terrible.

Warren is currently embedded with U.S. Special Operations soldiers in the Phillipeans. He is reporting on Nukes and Spooks about his work and posting on his birding frustrations here on BC.

I still miss him something terrible.

This post is also not about birds.

Rather, it is about what my girls in the Athena Hive produced this year.

This is capped honey and today was extraction day.

Dr. Harrison Monk is an outstanding Veterinary and bee master. Dr. Monk shares his extraction equipment each August so that my Dad and I can get his house all sticky rather than ours.

I know Warren is tortured because he would have so enjoyed extracting the end product of the amazing work of our back yard hives.

I enlisted the help of our best pals, Louis and Vencka to make work of honey filled frames.

This is me using a heated knife to uncap the wax and ready it for extraction.This is Dr. Monk telling me the correct way to use the knife and uncap the wax and prepare it for extraction. Louis. Working like a dog churning the extractor.
Dr. Monk's extractor is a hand crank.
Arm powered.
No plugs.
Just pure strength and the satisfaction of muscle power.
I'm sure Louis feels completely satisfied now, since he did all the cranking, all the lifting of heavy stuff and all the really sticky gooey work.

Right, Louis?
All that super human cranking sucks the honey out of the comb where it drips down the inside of the extractor.
Honey coalesces in a pool at the bottom of the extractor. The extractor spigot is then turned and out drips liquid delicious-ness.

This is the first honey I have extracted from the LoveNest hives and the taste is very fruity.

Lovely, actually.
Our neighborhood is laced with ornamental fruit trees and I think this year's honey is a product of fruit trees rather than the Popular or Locust trees that bloom a little later.

So, how do I feel right now?

Well, immense pride in what these hard working creatures created.

This hive worked together and visited about 225,000 flowers per day.
A single bee from this hive visited between 50-1000 flower a day.
These bees worked 2 million flowers to make one pound of honey.
To produce 2 pounds of honey, these bees traveled a distance equal to 4 times around the earth.

So, I am feeling a little like a thief.

A little like Winnie the Pooh.


Patrick B. said...

Oh man, I can't wait to have a hive someday!

Warren and Lisa Strobel said...

Hi Patrick!
It really is a wonderful hobby. I really do learn a lot from my little ladies.