RicelandMeadows


Oh Honey!
June 21, 2013, 6:36 am
Filed under: June 2013 | Tags: ,
My solar honey extractor

My solar honey extractor

June 21, 2013

I sold almost all of my bee equipment a year ago. I promptly caught a wild swarm of honeybees. I came up with enough left over stuff to make a hive for them, but I had no extractor. What you see in the jar is honeycomb filled with honey made by the bees. I mashed it all up with a potato masher.

The mashed up honey and comb is next put into a glass jar. A new lady’s knee high stocking is stretched over the top of the jar. A second jar is duct taped to the first jar, mouth to mouth. Then you turn it upside down, set it in the sun and wait.

The sun warms the mixture and lets the honey flow. The knee high stocking is the exact micron sized mesh to let the honey through, yet hold the wax behind. I do turn the jar some as needed to keep the honey flowing. It is a process that depends upon the warm sun…which we haven’t seen much of until these last couple of days. Now, that the sun has chosen to shine, the honey is dripping good.

I caution the reader to use glass jars because the wax and debris sticks to plastic making it unusable. The wax will only come out partially by washing. It makes a real mess in the dishwasher (do not try that one :o). Along with the glass, I will say use a brand new knee high…not one with laundry soap impregenated into it …or the odor of foot!

Now, if that won’t make you say “Oh Honey!,  I don’t know what will.

Speaking of “Oh Honey”,  We have been bottle feeding a few bull calves from a local dairy farm. The calves will one day supply us and our customers with ground beef. We butcher and grind the whole animal, steaks, roasts and all cuts included. This makes for some very good, lean ground beef…and it’s grass fed to boot!

Anyway, we have been feeding one group of calves for about six weeks. They just got weaned from the bottle on Wednesday, much to the delight of my dear wife, who is growing weary of feeding calves and washing bottles. She was thinking that two were done, two more to go for a couple more weeks and the whole bottle job would be done…. Wrong!

That sounded pretty good until the dairy farmer called and said he had one more bull calf … Did we want it? Connie said , “No, I don’t think he does, but thanks.” I of course said, “Sure, we’ll take it!”

So we are another six weeks away from finishing that whole bottle feeding, twice a day, and all the clean up that goes with it. We are only feeding three, but it does get a bit redundant. When I told my dear wife that we have one more calf to go…she smacked me playfully with a spatula, (much to the delight of my cousin) and said …. “Oh Honey!”

 


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