Pringle Creek Community is now home to 2 hives of Carniolan bees. Known for their gentle behavior, Carniolan bees also begin foraging for pollen earlier in the season and do not seem to mind wet weather. The hives are located in the back of the orchard and along Pringle Creek to ensure they have a variety of plants, access to fresh water, and observation by visitors.

On Saturday, April 6th, the bees were moved into their hives. Preparations began weeks before with the purchase and assembly of the hive boxes, painting and placement in theĀ orchard.

Bees need to be fed a sugar syrup mix, which was added to feeders in the hives. Once the prime foraging season begins they will not need to be fed as often or at all until early fall.

Beekeeper gear varies on level of desired protection. Some beekeepers wear little to no added protection but long sleeves and bee hood, others wear half to full bee suits. I have never worked with bees before so I decided to go with the full bee suit. Calmed nerves are ideal for working directly with bees and worrying less about bees stings felt comforting to me. Tape maybe a little overboard but it works.

Bee packages are designed to keep the bees contained during transportation, fed by a can of sugar water, and physically separated from the queen (she has her own private cage) while they get to know each other. Inside each individual box is about 10,000 bees and 1 queen.

There are many different ways to get the bees from the boxes to the hives. A beekeeper’s technique may change with familiarity with the process and working with increasingly active bees. I went the gentle route. Step 1 – Remove queen and place in hive. Step 2 – Place bee box in hive, remove fed can, return hive top. Step 3- Return the next day to release queen.

It is our hope that the bees will settle in nicely to their new home at Pringle Creek Community and become another unique and integrated element of sustainable living in our neighborhood.

Stay tuned for more bee keeping adventures, notices about public viewings, and other updates!