bees

Beekeeping donkey

Manuel Juraci Vieira needed a way to transport the honey he would collect from his beehives on his farm back to his home. His solution? His donkey, Boneco. Outfitted in his very own homemade beekeeping suit, Boneco tags alongside Vieira, helping him carry the honey they gather during their hauls. Working together, the unlikely colleagues and friends are able to harvest more of the sweet stuff than possible with Vieira working alone.
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Matures sun hive

TheSun Hive/ Haengekorb was full after a few weeks, and now bees are overflowing it seems at night and the propolis follows them on to the outside of the Haengekorb. The top glass bowl is normally covered with cloths and paper.

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A young bee colony in a sun hive

A swarm of bees was hived about 9 days ago - today it got opened for a moment to take a quick look.
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Cleaning and filtering beeswax iIn a homemade wax steamer

Getting clean wax from old combs and frames is not that easy. I do it in two stages. The first stage -- Wax Extracting -- is covered here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wzkxq...
This is the second stage -- cleaning blocks of dirty wax to get the bits and pieces out.

If you just pour hot wax through a filter, it will cool instantly and solidify on the filter. That's why it's worth putting the whole thing in a box and heating with steam.

Of course the pillow-cases get clogged up. When that happens you could either pour the warm wax into a second case (a bit dangerous and heavy too) -- or you could wait till the block has set hard (the next day) and peel off the dirty case and scrape down the wax before putting it into a clean one.

This is an important part of beekeeping -- it's part of the process of recycling and accessing all that wonderful wax. Solar wax extractors just don't work here in Ireland (or, more accurately they work on one or two days in the year) and anyway they're too small for my needs -- so here's what I came up with. I hope it helps and inspires you. (Please like and share!)

Notes: 1. Hot steam will burn you badly, so be careful!
2. Doing anything with an old gas bottle is also potentially dangerous unless you are certain that it contains no gas. I find it necessary to remove the small frame that protects the valve so I can get at it with a spanner. The copper pipe fittings didn't quite match the thread -- but there's no pressure in the system so this isn't a problem.

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Královna slunce (dokument)

Včely na světě existují již 150 miliónů let. Jsou nezbytnými pomocníky pro růst rostlin a plodin, které slouží jako potrava dalším živočichům. Lidé si během svého vývoje uvědomovali důležitost včel a již od starověku se věnovali včelařství. Nedávno však u včel začalo docházet k nadměrnému úhynu bez zjevné příčiny. Film se věnuje problematice dramaticky se zhoršujícího zdravotního stavu včelstev a nedozírným následkům, které může mít úhyn včel pro naši samotnou existenci. Hledá odpovědi na otázky, co nám vlastně včely chtějí říct a jaký význam mají včely v širším kontextu udržitelnosti života na Zemi. Aby k takové katastrofě nedošlo, je nutno zásadně změnit náš přístup k chovu včel. V tomto ohledu film nabízí mnoho podnětů a inspirativních příkladů z celého světa.

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How to make a skep

An IWF film made in Germany in the 1970's.

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Skep Bees

Great is the joy of the natural beekeeper watching the blessed creatures bringing riches of crocus pollen in their cosy home which is a skep made of straw and lined with propolis.
But how do you get the honey, I hear you ask and the answer is that they get to keep it and they seem really happy with that deal. And we get the joy of them which is abundant.
Love to the bees!

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The Rose Hive Method

Having all of the same frames size and hive body size is great.

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Sun hive

The Sun Hive/Haengekorb outlines the outer, invisible "skin" of the "Bien", the wholeness and single entity of the bee. It reveals the innate round shape of the "Bien". It's true nature becomes palpable, through the gestalt and it's position in space. The Haengekorb shows, how everything within the colony is round. The shape of it speaks with a pre-verbal-language. And the shape can share the living processes within.

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Revealing the Sun Hive

A great wonder to see what the bees built in four weeks of which only one was good weather. The skeps weren't ready when the swarm came, so this was an opportunity to exchange them to ones coated in cow dung. Also, the inside covers over the wooden hoops needed to be changed, as the bees had eaten the calico cloth.

The form of the nest beautifully reveals the preferences of the Bien. The sun hive is the creation of German sculptor Guenther Mancke, who has thus developed a hive like no other, a hive for bees.

The hive is made of biodynamically grown rye straw and was made in a therapeutic institution for autistic youngsters in Weissenseifen, Germany. A natural beekeeper's dream hive, introduced in UK by the Natural Beekeeping Trust and Tablehurst Farm.

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