Honey Extraction

Yesterday was the day we decided to extract our honey from the hive! We had already fitted a clearer board between the 2 supers on the hive to clear the top one (with the honey in) of bees, so were able to remove the frames quickly and efficiently. We then placed 2 packs of fondant in the empty super to feed the bees – we had noticed that they had already been uncapping sealed cells of honey as the weather has been so unsettled. Phase 1 completed successfully we were on a high!


Sandra had collected a honey extractor from LDBKA so we thought we were ready to go. Using a heated bread knife we carefully uncapped the first 4 frames and placed them, as instructed, in the extractor. Following instructions we slowly turned one way, then turned the frames around and turned again, this time a little quicker. What a disappointment – only about a teacup full of honey in the bottom of the extractor! Closer inspection of the frames showed lots of crystallised honey that was never going to be spun out. After some discussion we resorted to plan B – cutting out the honey from the frames and extraction by melting – the wax floats on top of the honey and can be skimmed off! We managed to pot 9 large and 5 small jars by this method so are relatively pleased! However we now need to rebuild 9 frames and return them to the hive, which I think is going to be more complex than we originally imagined – watch this space!