a tangled mass of cross comb

Sophie and I checked the hive yesterday. This is what we found.

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There was capped brood, capped honey, pollen, and open cells with nectar not yet capped. And lots and lots of bees. Yeah!

Below is a shot from one of the bars we looked at that was full of uncapped honey. Isn’t it pretty?

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But we also found a terrible mess of cross combs. When we moved one of the bars, a big piece of comb that had been attached to two bars, ripped and fell off. Bummer. Below is a shot looking down into the hive where the torn bit fell.

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You can see on this bar how tangled it all is. Instead of one comb on each bar, there are two or even three combs, all twisty curvy on there. This picture shows where the big piece of comb fell from–see the ripped section along the upper left?hive-check-3.jpg

Here is how I left it, with the proper sized top-bars in between the problematic big ones. The idea is that the bees will build straight comb on the skinny bars, and I’ll phase out the too-big bars. We’ll see if they buy it.

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But here is what we mashed out of the piece of comb that broke off:

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Oh my god, it is so wonderful tasting, just explodes in your mouth. Wow!

Sophie was so great, she held the gear (camera, knife (which we didn’t need), and water squirter) and handed me things as I needed them–which was quite an art, considering the big gloves she was wearing. She is so interested in the whole thing. Last week we watched a totally cool show on tv, Tales from the Hive. Really amazing! We were both riveted.

This last shot was almost a picture of one of our girls on one of our poppies but just as the camera clicked, she flew off. So you’ll have to imagine her, nosing around inside there, big pollen sacks on her legs. That’s a bit of Sophie’s hair in the upper left. She was leaning in close to watch and said, “Hi, bee! Thank you for the honey!” She’s the best.

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Buzzzzzzzzz.

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