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Honey Construction Season

Rogue Farms HoneybeesHere’s the deadline we can’t put off at the Rogue Farms Hopyard.

In about three weeks, someone’s going to pull up in a big truck and unload 100 starter hives, also known as nucs. It’s a huge expansion of the Rogue Hopyard apiary.

That gives us three weeks to finish constructing 200 new hive boxes and 200 new super boxes. Otherwise the new honeybees won’t have a place to live.

The hive and super boxes come to us in parts. This photo shows a pile of honeycomb frames.

The hive and super boxes come to us in parts.

Rogue Beekeeper Josh Cronin assembles the parts using nails, screws and glue.

Rogue Beekeeper Josh Cronin assembles the parts using nails, screws and glue.

Josh building hive super

Each hive consists of 2 hive boxes where the bees live, and two super boxes where they store surplus honey. This photos shows construction of a hive box.

The parts of the hive, boxes and honeycomb frames, are coming together.

The parts of the hive – boxes and honeycomb frames – are coming together.

Here's some completed boxes. They'll be painted before going out into the field.

Here’s some completed boxes. They’ll be painted before going out into the field.

100 nucs means 100 new hives. And moving them into position requires a big truck and trailer.

100 nucs means 100 new hives. And moving them into position calls for a big truck and trailer.

So where will the 100 additional hives be placed? We'll place them alongside the Willamette River. That's a prime spot for the honeybees to forage on wild summer blackberries. They can also fly across the river to forage in the wildflowers of the Ankeny Wildlife Refuge.

The new hives will be placed on the edge of the Rogue Farms Hopyard near the Willamette River. That’s a prime spot for the honeybees to forage on wild summer blackberries. They can also fly across the river to forage in the wildflowers of the Ankeny Wildlife Refuge.

We’re confident that Josh will be done building the new hives and have them in place by the time the nucs appear in mid-May.

Although it’s hard to make predictions, the 100 new hives will increase our honey production by about 4000 pounds. And that will mean more Rogue Farms 19 Original Colonies Mead and Honey Kolsch for us to enjoy later in the year.

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