Thursday 14 May 2020

Sites to visit - Nine Lectures on Bees - lecture one.

Hello readers,

Today I'm having a look on another site that was gathering dust in my 'must browse here later' list.
Today this site is : Nine Lectures on Bees

First thing that hits me when I click the link is the date; online since 15 december 2009.  So old information.  I'll have to take things with a grain of salt.  That being said there is a TON of information out there that may seem outdated, but in fact is still very useful!

Second thing that strikes me when scrolling down is this: Rudolf Steiner.  This is a lecture series on bees by Rudolf Steiner?  What do I have to expect?  I know the name, but I have no idea what Steiner really stands for...  Guess I'll find out. 

What I see next tells me this is a collection out of a larger work of his and I decide to break up the reading of this site.  One lecture per blog post should do...  So let's get cracking!

I opened the cover sheet, but let's skip that here.

Lecture one - 23 februari 1923


As all beekeeping is local I stop reading right there.  I need to know where Dornach is.  What climate it has, so google, let me know!
Dornach is situated in Switzerland - that's a bit colder climate than where I keep bees, and from the top of my head I'd say more 'nature' than here too...  
So now we know Mr Steiner is talking from another country that grain of salt grows.

Wasps or Bees

The first lecture appears to start of with the answer to a question from the audience. And then focuses on the bees and their life inside the hive.  In the first alinea Mr Steiner points out that the bees organise and balance their work and way of life more than wasps or ants do. He also points out that the environment has a huge influence on a beehive.  And I get the feeling he is almost saddened by the fact that bees don't share the intellect that is bestowed on humans.

Sexual drive

The second alinea dives right into the heart of things.  Bees don't know a sexual drive as do many other species.  In a beehive only the queen bee reproduces by laying eggs.  The other female bees don't, they have their drive for reproduction suppressed.

Love and the soul

In this alinea Mr Steiner has lost me.  He talks about how the sex drive is an expression of love.  Love and the soul are in the same realm.  The soul works on a number of organs in the body, and how the bees, having their drive suppressed, transform into something else.  Something that finds expression in the work they do as a whole.

Connection to venus

Mr Steiner continues with saying there is wisdom that existed in mankind, but no longer does.  This old wisdom connected this 'loving way of live of the bees' to the planet Venus for some reason.  In this the bees have surrendered themselves to Venus, where the wasps and the ants do not.  And therefore the bees have a much greater wisdom. 

Unconscious wisdom

Mr Steiner points his public in the direction of some wisdom he has spoken of in the past, an unconscious form of wisdom.  A kind of wisdom that the bees do have and is expressed in the way the bees live.  He describes this expression as a feeling we get when love finds the way into our heart, the hive knows this kind of love all the time, or at least that's how I read his words.  To understand the bees is to acknowledge they are completely pervaded in an atmosphere of love.

The love life of the flowers

As the bees are living in love, so they must feed.  They eat the parts of the plants that are the same as they are.  They eat love.  The love that is life to flowers.  - As I read this I'm starting to think Mr Steiner possesses a sort of wisdom comparable to that of a guru of India. - 

To study bees you need the soul as an instrument of measurement

Mr Steiner asks you to live the life of the honeybee through consumption of their honey and by reflecting on what that honey does to you.  Honey connects the air- and water-elements in the body, the correct amount of Honey in the food of mankind prepares the soul to be used.  It helps breathe rightly.

Beekeeping makes men strong

As the bees bring to the hive what is around it in the world, so brings the beekeeper in himself what is to be found in a beehive.
By way of the bee-hive the whole Cosmos enters man and makes him strong and able.

The first lecture about bees...  It tells you that bees don't work like other animals do.  That they deliver the wisdom of the world to you by way of love, inclusion of love through abstinence of reproduction at the individual level.

So maybe it's a good idea to meditate before you open up a hive.  To love your bees before you open them up, so they feel you are love, as they are...  I wonder if that would help you to get less stings ...

There is so much out there we don't yet understand, so much that we cannot understand with our 'brain', all that wisdom that is now lost, it is still out there!.

I must say I like how Mr Steiner writes (or at least how the lecture on bees is written)  I'm curious to find out what the 2nd lecture says.  For now I'm going to deduct lecture one into one word: Inclusion.

The bees include the whole world into their hive.

That is all folks!

Bob Out

Friday 8 May 2020

Black Queens coming!

Hello readers,

On saturday 09th of may 2020 I'll be picking up 20 larvae of the apis mellifera mellifera.
I split a colony on may 3rd (the LL2019 into the LL2020) and went checking on it a couple of days later to see if they had made any queens.
It didn't look like it, or maybe they moved an egg...  In any case here is my current plan of action:

  1. Prepare for the cups to be placed inside a hive, bring a nuc.
  2. Collect the cups
  3. Move them onto the frame that is prepared on site.
  4. Switch LL2020 and LL2019 from position.
  5. open the LL2020, check for closed queencells.
  6. If I don't find any, move to step 10 - If I do find queencells I'll open the LL2019 and look for the queen and take her out into the nuc.
  7. I'll take out every frame from the LL2019 that has larvae in them and move them into the Nuc with the queen.
  8. Add a frame of Pollen and nectar to the 6-framer.
  9. Then move the closed queencells from LL2020 into LL2019 
  10. Place the cups with larvae inside LL2020

I think I covered everything to get the larvae going.

Once the queencups are closed I think of distributing them into matingnucs.

Suppose all 20 larvae are succesfull as of today I'll have this available:

  1. Mini plus (1- feeder on top, standard bottom board and roof) (1)
  2. Mini plus bottom feeder, standard roof (2)
  3. Queencastle, holds 3 times 3 frames of zander - feeding frame, empty frame of drawn out comb and a frame of closed brood only (5)
  4. 3 mini plus DYI bottoms and roofs (8)
  5. Chinese mating nuc (10)
  6. 2 6-framers simplex with food from fridge (12)
  7. 1 6-frame Zander poly nuc (13)
  8. The rest (7) caged in the LL2020
  9. I might be able to take one more out and split the 2 deeps high LL2020 into 2 seperate hives.
If I want more hardware to work with I have till 18th of may to fabricate more.
I have half a mind set on not fussing too much about extra roofs and just stack 2 nucs on top of each other making sure their entrances are on opposit sides. With nothing more than a solid bottom board to keep them separate.

I'll keep you posted as soon as I can!

 Bob Out

Sites to visit - Nine Lectures on Bees - lecture one.

Hello readers, Today I'm having a look on another site that was gathering dust in my 'must browse here later' list. Today thi...