First Harvest from Hives in Ripon

The first harvest of the year was from three hives in Ripon that were established in the spring of 2011.

1pm. Ian opened the first hive to pull frames of honey ready to be harvested. We made sure to leave enough for the bees to eat this winter. We loaded four full boxes of honey onto the truck and drove back to Madison.

5pm. He’s decapping the honey comb with a long knife. There’s a thin layer of wax over the honey to seal it in, we have to remove that from each frame before we can load it into the extractor.

6pm. The extractor is up and running. It holds twenty frames (two boxes worth) at a time.

7pm. The last of the honey is running out of the extractor and filtered into the bucket. We extracted 12 gallons of honey that night. Over 140 pounds!