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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last time I took a frame from my bees, they were all over me and I had to scramble to put on my veil and gloves and re-light the smoker. Today I just peeked into my top super to check on progress. The frame I pulled was fully capped, so I decided not to put it back. I put my top board back on with a ventilation spacer, then I held the frame up to that opening and the bees started marching back into the hive. About a 100 did not want to leave, so I just gently blew on the frame to get them going. The last 5 or 6 had to be brushed off with my fingers and I walked off with the frame.

so there you go: took honey with no smoke, no protective gear, and no stings. These little creatures continue to amaze me with their gentleness.
 

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Last time I took a frame from my bees, they were all over me and I had to scramble to put on my veil and gloves and re-light the smoker. Today I just peeked into my top super to check on progress. The frame I pulled was fully capped, so I decided not to put it back. I put my top board back on with a ventilation spacer, then I held the frame up to that opening and the bees started marching back into the hive. About a 100 did not want to leave, so I just gently blew on the frame to get them going. The last 5 or 6 had to be brushed off with my fingers and I walked off with the frame.

so there you go: took honey with no smoke, no protective gear, and no stings. These little creatures continue to amaze me with their gentleness.
Did the bees have to twist your arm to make that decision? :wink: :thumbsup:
 

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Good for you!

With AHB always a local option, I won't open a hive without a suit or jacket and veil and gloves, but smoke is optional if the workers are out and it is sunny. Since I have gone to wood pellets the darned smoker won't light and stay lit half the time anyway. But that is how I harvest my meager honey. One frame at a time. If I get a full honey super next year I'll need an education.

Gypsi
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
To continue the story of this frame: I took it out around 10 in the morning. I scraped the honey off into a strainer over a pot, with my 3 little girls sitting around me on the floor mooching honey and "cleaning up" drips. 5+1/2 pounds of beautiful pale honey. Around noon I stuck the wet frame back in the hive for the bees to clean up. I put it in the third deep super where the bees have shown no inclination to draw out the frames yet. So tonight I went back to take it out and store it. To my surprise, the bees had cleaned it out and drawn the cells out to 1/2 depth over the entire two sides of the frame. I knew they could work fast, but wow!!! I'll have to remember how much they like "wet" frames.
 

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The frame I pulled was fully capped, so I decided not to put it back...... the bees started marching back into the hive......These little creatures continue to amaze me with their gentleness.
Just don't try to do the same thing with uncapped honey. They'll fight you like nobody's business if you try to take honey from frames with open cells. The difference in the bee's behavior on capped vs uncapped honey is amazing.
 

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Personally, I don't smoke when removing honey. I don't want them breaking into the capped honey as I am trying to take it. I also don't want smoke flavored honey. I just use a little $3 bee escape that I have put on the day before. This is practical because I only have 2 hives and their in my backyard.
 
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