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Particular Directions For Testing The Matter






Category: SWARMING.

I will now give more minute directions for an examination. Full hives
require a little more care than those containing fewer bees. Don't let
the crowded state of the hive, even if some are outside, deter you from
gratifying a laudable curiosity, (such hives are most likely to possess
these cells.) Let the satisfaction of ascertaining a few facts for
yourselves stimulate you to this exertion, the risk is not much; what I
have done you may do. This is better than to rely on any man's "_ipse
dixit_." I do it without any protection whatever for face or hands;
but, if you have too much fear of stings, a veil to protect the face
may be put on, but do without it, if you can find the courage, as you
will want a good view. The best time is, when most of the bees are out
at work near the middle of the day; but then the bees from the other
hives are sometimes cross, and interfere. On that account I prefer
morning or evening, although there are more bees to be smoked out of
the way. If you are accustomed to smoking tobacco, you will find a pipe
just the thing for making a smoke here; if not, vide a description of
an apparatus in chap. 18th, p. 281. When you are ready to proceed, some
smoke must be blown under the hive before you touch it; then raise the
front side a few inches, and blow in some more; now carefully lift the
hive from the stand, avoiding any jar, as this would arouse their
anger; turn it bottom upwards; also, be careful all the time not to
breathe among them. More smoke will now make them crowd among the combs
out of your way while you examine. It is very common for the bees to
set up a buzzing, and rush up the sides of the hive, but a little smoke
will drive them back; get them out of the way as much as possible, and
look on the edges of the combs for the queens' cells, where most of
them are. If the hive is fully supplied with honey, they will be near
the bottom, if not, farther up among the combs; in some hives they
cannot be seen even where they exist. Yet they may be found in four out
of five, by a thorough search. I have found nine within two inches of
the bottom, some on the extreme ends of the comb. I would here give a
caution about turning over hives with very new combs, before they are
attached to the sides of the hive, as they are apt to bend over.





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Previous: Mr Miner Not Correct



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