We received our bees today and Shawn got both hives up and going without a single sting..yay!
I admit that I was a little intimidated by them. However, Shawn drove two hours to pick up the packages of bees. When he put them in his vehicle he noticed that there were some bees riding along on the outside of the packages. So, he got to drive home two hours with some bees flying around inside the vehicle with them. When he stopped at Dairy Queen to eat he even had a guy in the booth behind him say, "Hey did you know you've got a bee on your shirt?" So, by the time he got home he wasn't quite as intimidated by them as I was.
Sam, Sarah, and I went out to watch Shawn install the bees into their new homes.
Here he is getting the queen's cage ready to hang inside the top bar hive
Pouring the package of bees into the top bar hive
The package still had some bees in it so he set it on the ground in front of the hive's entrance and then closed it up by affixing the roof to the hive. The bees inside the package made their way into the hive by themselves and Shawn retrieved the empty package as the sun went down.
Finishing up with the second hive and putting the bars back in place
It was so much easier and faster than I expected it to be. When Shawn went down to retrieve the empty packages later this evening he didn't even bother to wear the protective veil or gloves. The bees really are gentle.
So, our next goal is to keep the bees alive. We plan on giving them some supplemental food for a week or so, but then they'll be on their own. I'll try to keep updating on our bee-adventure.