For the Love of Honey and Al

12/11/2013 12:58:00 PM

Tags: Bees, Beekeeping, Honey, Al Pacino, Honeycomb

Turn the Paige HomesteadersWe love honey! We were very excited to start the apiary on our new property last year because we had the space to increase the hive count. Once we set up a place under the pine trees to protect them from the 118-degree heat, we started offering free bee recovery services so we could capture feral hives. Very quickly the calls came in – lots of them!  We started carrying our bee recovery vacuum and other equipment with us to our day jobs and recovered more than 30 hives in less than 10 months. Most of the recovered hives did not survive the heat or the stress of the move, but we ended up with six hives by the end of summer.

Recovery

Recovery hive in a bucket

Beekeeping at Waterhorn

Hive maintenence

In November, I received a call inquiring about bees in general and after a few minutes of conversation, I asked if this was about a bee hive recovery. To my surprise, it was not. A director of a movie was looking for non-stinging honeybees (drones) to use in an upcoming Al Pacino movie. At first, I thought it might be a prank, but as it turned out, we ended up providing honeycomb props and drones for the film and got to meet Al Pacino in person. What a thrill! 

We also ended up sharing some of our honey with the directors and with Al Pacino. We hope the scene doesn’t get cut from the film since Al was extremely brave around the robber bees that showed up to take some honey during the filming – I guess we’ll find out next year when the movie “Manglehorn” is released. I have to admit, we were overwhelmed by the friendliness and warmth of the directors and film crew. We also made friends with the animal-actors director too, who now knows where to go when looking for bee props in Austin, Texas! I wonder if they might need chickens or rabbits next time?

Al Pacino with Kevin and Lydia

Yep, that's Al Pacino (in costume)

So, long story short, you just never know what role you will play when you keep bees. We are hopeful that our hives will yield delicious honey next spring and thankful for the wonderful experience they brought to our farm in a most unique situation.

Our next bee adventure will be teaching children about the importance of honeybees. One of the associations offers a beekeeping scholarship, and we have decided to do the same in our area. We will be providing free beekeeping classes to children under 12 and give them a hive, tools, and bee suit to get started. If they are successful after keeping the bees for one year, they get to keep all of it! Fingers crossed, we hope there is lots of interest!

bees

Beekeeping is full of surprises!



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Post a comment below.

 

Rene
12/12/2013 8:19:32 PM
Hi, I enjoyed your blog. Are you in Paige?

NebraskaDave
12/12/2013 7:51:33 AM
Paige, what a thrill it must have been to see Al and be onset while a movie was being produced. I'll be sure to watch for when it's released. Bees are such an integral part of the balance of nature. I am surprised that you would find 30 feral hives when all we hear is that bees are dying and are in danger. It's sad that so many of the hives didn't make it through the heat. Do you think they would have survived any better if left in the wild? Personally, I've not seen any bees swarming in the wild. We must have some kind of pollinators here because my garden has not had trouble producing. I just don't see them very often. Of course now I learn that bees are not the only insect that pollinates plants. Butterflies and some birds can be part of the process as well. I hope things are better for you next summer. ***** Have a great bee hive day.

Mary
12/12/2013 7:14:36 AM
Fun!!



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