What Luck!

Discussion in 'Beekeeping' started by electronrider, Nov 21, 2004.

  1. electronrider

    electronrider Well-Known Member

    Nov 10, 2004
    West Central Indiana
    Just had the luckiest day in quite a while, had to share.

    As luck would have it, my girlfriends next door neighbor is a 4th generation beekeeper, and their family has been doing bees since before 1900. They stopped doing it some years ago, but all the stuff is still there. Being new to the hobby, naturally I wanted to go check this all out! We get over there, and it was like stepping back in time about 50 years. Nothing has been touched (including grandpa's girlie calender, quite risque for the time LOL! ). We get to talkin as he's showing me thier operation, and it just blew my mind. Turns out they had over 450 hives at one time, but they got almost completely wiped out when the mites came around in the late 80's. Theres two mechanical extractors that were his grandfather's as well as an old hand crank they used before that. They have quite a set up for processing it all, the frame holders for draining it are set up to go right into the pump that pumps the honey into a couple stainless vats.. They had the old square tin cans that they used to fill for loading on the trains and everyhting! There were 2 floors worth of supers and hive bodies stacked up all over the place, as well as feeders by the dozen, and all kinds of really neat old tools.

    He told me that he's down to about 8 hives, but these are really tough and resistant colonies, and he's looking to expand it back out a bit this year.Being the eager beaver that I am about my new hobby, I naturally volunteered my time to help him, in exchange for 4 generations worth of beekeeping experience. ( I feel I'm definitely getting more out of that deal, really anxious now! ) He lets me know that we'll work something out for a few hives, the old hand extractor , and feeeders and all the fixins. He made me promise I wouldnt sell the extractor, he says it's prolly worth more as an antique than it is as a tool, but if I use it and promise not to sell it I'm good to go. Naturally, I said "of course", and plan on never getting rid of it.

    The rest of the homestead was just as neat, someone who is into antiques would absolutely fall over dead, stuff tucked away everywhere. Looks like I'll have more than enough exposure time to hives next season, still can't believe my luck!
  2. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

    May 10, 2002
    Awsome! :yeeha:

  3. justgojumpit

    justgojumpit Well-Known Member

    May 5, 2003
    North Salem, NY
    I'm riddled with envy!