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330px-Mårten_Eskil_Winge_-_Tor's_Fight_with_the_Giants_-_Google_Art_Project

Thor’s Fight with the Giants by Mårten Eskil Winge, 1872

Hehehe, Just came in from doing a walk through the bee yard. One hive is off to itself having been established under a tree where a swarm had been captured this past spring. The hive grew to such size that moving it became problematic so it was just left on its own. The problem is the bottom board on this hive is a makeshift piece of thin lauan plywood screwed to spacers and a 10 frame deep. I had built it to use for “on the road” swarm captures but it had been utilized in a pinch and had remained.

I have known I needed to move the whole thing over to a regular bottom board and 10 frame  – some day. Yeah, it never happened. But today, with the rain and some of crappy weather behind us, I decide I’m ready to do something about it. hehehe.

Now the human mind is a curious thing and I know better than to dismantle this still large hive of four boxes on a rainy day to change out the bottom board. So the mind’s acceptable substitution, or less absurd solution, is to replace the idea of changing the bottom board with the more reasonable task of just sliding a reducer into place. The fact that it is raining outside doesn’t seem to impact this well thought out, reasonable compromise, to the problem.

Effort 1: reducer too long; about 5 bees decide they don’t want the reducer and run me off.

Effort 2: Now equipped with a bee suit and a hive tool I return and attempt to place reducer on front of hive; reducer becomes stuck sideways and won’t slide into place even using hive tool as wedge; about 20 bees decide they would rather not have a reducer and run me away.

Effort 3: I return with suit, gloves, hive tool, and hammer; I am greeted by 30 or more bees upon approach; I place reducer and start tapping it into place with hammer; within seconds about 50 – 75 bees come out and demand I leave; I set a new world’s speed record successfully installing the reducer; then, assuming this is a biathlon, I set another world land speed record running back to the house. There I discover I have transported at least a dozen hard core bees attached to my jeans, suit, and veil; I spend the next 10 minutes removing bees and resolve to just leave that hive to its own defenses – it seems they really didn’t need a reducer after all.

I wonder where I dropped that hammer.