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Author Topic: I nominate myself for "Wussiest Beek of the year" Anyone else want to nominate?  (Read 876 times)
uglyfrozenfish
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Location: Saranac, Michigan


« on: August 19, 2011, 01:27:49 PM »

Checked on one of my hives today with the goal of grabbing a few frames of capped brood for another hive that just swarmed.  My first hint that I should have walked away was when I walked up to the hive and saw the girls hanging out on the front porch.  Not much activity just chillin.  There isn't much blooming right now, goldenrod is just about to start but not there yet.  I decided to go for it anyway and smoked them real well.  I Took off the top two boxes to get to the broodnest and set them aside with a cover so they couldn't get out and would be happy.  I started to work on the first frame.  It was stuck.  I peeked in and it looked like the wax had fallen at some point in the last couple weeks and they had fused it to the next frame.  Big breath.  Attempted to lift the two frames at once.  BAM, stung on the arm through the suit, and before I new it had a cloud of bees around me.  RUN!!! I waited a few minutes gathered my bravery back and went back.   LOTS of smoke I had a nice little smoke cloud going the bees were all back in the hive no one bugging me.  Touched the frame:  immediately had them coming at me again RUN!!!.  This time confidence shattered I went back and put the next box on to work that one instead.  Immediately had them all over me again for the third time I ran away with my tail between my legs.   I went back closed them up told them they were a bunch of meainies and went home emptyhanded +1 sting.  JUST one sting sent me running away.  I am a SCAREDY CAT! embarassed embarassed

Hope my cowardace brightens your day.  Feel free to share to make me feel better grin

Lee
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gailmo
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Location: Columbia, Missouri


« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2011, 02:34:22 PM »

Ok...you say share--so here is my story. 

I opened one of my hives two days ago to check on things.  Last time I was messing in the hives I was stung through my blue jeans--so I put on a pair of windpants over my jeans to give more protection.  I fired up the smoker....put on the heavy cotton workshirt I use as my bee jacket, pulled on the long heavy rubber gloves I find to be excellent for working the bees.  So everything was looking good.  I pulled on my veil and tied it and was ready to go.

I wanted to open the hive all the way....basically to check the bottom super to see if it had any brood in it.  If not, I wanted to pull that box and start reducing the hive in size in anticipation for winter.  I am leaving in two weeks for Vietnam and I need to begin to get the hive downsized for my departure.  One thing I did try --after reading about it here--was to use drapes over the supers I had pulled and set aside.  I used some old Tshirts...and covered the tops of the supers as I pulled them off the hive.  This really worked great because the bees seemed to be calm and stayed in the supers once they were set aside.

Well...that was the good news!  As I got down to the second to last box....the bees really were getting a bit testy.  They were zinging out of the hive and of course began to pepper me with little bumps.  I was smug because my body was pretty well covered.  Suddenly I heard this LOUD buzzing in my ear.  Hmmmmm... suddenly I realized that I had bees EVERYWHERE inside my veil.  I looked down and saw that I had crossed the ties on the veil before wrapping them around my body.  So when I leaned down to pull a frame or super, a big ol' gap appeared for those upset bees to fly upward and in the veil.  Gad....I not only felt stupid....but also  pain.  I ran like hell...and got away from the hive.  Of course everyone kept following me.  I finally was able to rip off the veil and release the angry girls. 

End result of my stupidity:  Only five stings on my head, ears and jaw.  I think I was pretty lucky that they didn't get me on my lips, eyes or nose.  It could have been much, much worse for the valuable lesson I learned about correctly tying my veil.

I gulped down 2-3 teaspoons of Benadryl and pulled back on my veil and went back to the hive and ended up pulling the bottom super and then replacing the other boxes back on the hive.  So now I have four medium boxes on the hive. Two bottom are brood and the third and forth are pretty full of honey.  Hopefully they will be ok and have enough to get them through the worst of the winter months.
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Algonam
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« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2011, 03:15:51 PM »

If it makes you feel any better, I haven't opened the bottom box since installing the nucs in late May. I am too nervous to disturb or even injure the quuen. The nuc frames are plastic, everything else is wood. I find the plastic frames stick horribly and I have to really pull and tear each frame from the next. I still haven't seen my queens (2 hives) but I know they are there.
I use a veil, a Spring/Fall windbreaker, full beekeeping gloves and wear thick denim workpants with workboots when working at the hives. I sweat so much it is hard to see through the veil screening! Some of you in the deep south (hot states) must just chuckle about that!
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Oh Canada!
luvin honey
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« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2011, 06:12:21 PM »

Okay, you win Smiley

I can take stings at the hives fine--I'm mentally tough and prepared for them. But, Wed, while selling at our farmer's market a honeybee was all over me. You know what I mean. I had on some beeswax body balm to soothe my blackberry-picking wounds, so maybe that was it. Anyway, when I went to cross my leg I bumped her and she stung.

Now that one really hurt. I think it was the mental unreadiness to be stung! And it gave me a little more empathy towards people who are wussy about stings Cheesy
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The pedigree of honey
Does not concern the bee;
A clover, any time, to him
Is aristocracy.
---Emily Dickinson
Michael Bush
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« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2011, 04:29:46 AM »

Too much smoke can be as bad as no smoke.  You only need a little smoke and a lot of finesse.   A lot of smoke and very little finesse will have the opposite effect.  Really hot smoke can really get them angry.  But a dearth is not the time to be messing with them if you can help it.

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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
skatesailor
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« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2011, 09:36:02 PM »

In my teens I was working about 10 hives, all gentle. They lulled me into a false sense of security where I would just slip on some gloves and toss a veil on without tying it. On that fateful day I opened my best hive and it exploded in angry bees. Before I knew it I had 18 inside the veil. I know that because thats how many stings on my face. I had one that kept circling my nose and eye. I ran into the garage to get in the dark with the bees chasing. That caused my father to make a quick exit out the other end flailing his hands about his head. I then went to the house and said those words my mother never got used to. "I think I need to go to the hospital." I was pretty swollen by the time we got there but I was always amazed how quickly the swelling went down after the shots.
Later inspection showed that a skunk had been working the hive pretty hard.
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CapnChkn
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Location: Huntsville AL


« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2011, 10:01:48 PM »

Through the pants in a very sensitive place.
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"Thinking is like sin, them that doesn't is scairt of it, and them that does gets to liking it so much they can't quit!"  -Josh Billings.
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