If you are a beekeeper, then harvesting your honey is the most important task. You nurture and coddle the honeybees until they become mature. It is not about how much honey you harvest; it is all about the quality of the honey you get. You can measure the quality of the honey through its color and flavor. There are more than 300 varieties of honey available. Each honey is influenced due to the geographical condition, harvest time, soil, etc.
The color of the honey also changes according to the season. You will find it light golden yellow during spring harvest, while it can be more robust during the late summer. The official colors of the honey are water white, white, extra light amber, amber, and dark amber.
Colors and flavors are known as good reasons to monitor the favorite gathering spots of bees. Many beekeepers like texas beekeeping supplies use the digital honey analyzer to measure the right amount of light absorbed by the honey. There are certain precautions that one needs to take while harvesting the honey from owned bees. Here is a detailed guide on how to harvest the money at home.
Open the Hive
The first step that includes honey harvesting is to open the hive. You can use the smoker and approach the beehive from behind. Post this you can simply puff the smoke accumulated around the hive entrance. You can remove the top as well as smoke opening to drive the bees to the lower side of the hive. After this, you would need to remove the inner cover of the hive. For this, you can use the mini crowbar style hive tool. This will help to pry the inner cover loose since bees tend to seal it with propolis. It is a resin-like mixture collected by the bees from the taste buds.
Remove the Bees from Hive
In the second step, you can either remove a frame or full super. You would also need to remove any kind of lingering bees from that area. There are various chemical as well as mechanical methods of removing bees that you can follow. You would then need to pull the bee-free frames out and keep them aside till the time you are getting ready to take the honey-laden frames.
Uncap the Honey
In the third step, you would need to uncap the honey. Here once you get inside into the hives, make sure to uncap the wax-sealed honeycomb with the help of an uncapping knife. You can also use the fork or scratcher if you do not have any uncapping knife. You would need to scrape off the honey from both sides of the comb to remove the honey.
Extract the honey
Post scraping, you need to start extracting the honey. For this, you can place the frame into the honey extractor. This honey extractor is available in electric as well as hand-cranked versions. Here you need to spin the frames and force the honey to the walls of the drum to drop to the bottom. Make sure the drum of an extractor consists of a spigot to release the honey.
Bottle the honey
Here comes the last step in the honey extraction process. You can strain the honey with the help of a filter. You can also use several layers of cheesecloth in case you do not have the filter. This helps to remove stray bits of wax and any other debris from honey during the filtering process. After this, your honey will be ready to use. Make sure to use clean and sterilized bottles to store the honey and avoid contamination.