The extraction of the spring harvest from the apiary took place on the evening of Monday 1st June.
Having been prepared with porter escapes, supers were taken from hives#1, #2(x2), #3(x2), #5 and #6(x2). The porter escapes had done their job on hives #1, #5 & #6 but we had to resort to brushing the bees off of the supers from hives #2 & #3. As a result the super on hive#8 was missed and remains on the hive. Each super was marked with the hive it came from.
The supers were transported to the Petersfield Community Centre where the extraction took place. Although we had brought along the association’s electric extractor it transpired that the sockets in the new kitchen were too high for lead of the extractor and without an extension lead we had to fall back to the manual extractors of the association and Richard Williams’.
Following a brief resume of Hygiene and Honey regulations it was all hands on. The frames being uncapped where required and shake tested where not.  Some of the capped frames had already started to granulate, some were still ‘green’ and two frames were found to have unsealed brood in them!
The manual extractors were used intensively with the honey extracted being filtered into buckets. A refractometer was used to record a water content of 17.5%, well within the requirements for honey (<20%).
The association extractor was then cleaned and adapted to become a bottling tank. Empty jars were washed then heated in an electric oven before being used to hold the first batch of honey. The weight of each jar was checked with the ‘fillers’ vying to get closest to 454g.
We ended the evening with 38x1lb jars and approximately 60lbs (in 3 buckets) of honey.
The extracted frames and those not processed will be retuned to their hives in the apiary.