Busy bees: Aspiring Middleboro beekeepers learn the craft

Mar 19, 2023

MIDDLEBORO — If attendance at Soule Homestead’s introduction to beekeeping class on March 18 is anything to go by, Middleboro is in for a sweet spring and summer.

Veteran expert beekeeper Kevin O’Donnell led the two-hour class, which showed the 25 attendees how to set up and care for home beehives.

Bees drop nectar onto chicken wire frames, which evaporates to make honey.

The items one needs to start their own hive are a gallon of sugar water to feed the bees, a couple of boxes to serve as the walls of the hive, a bunch of wooden frames with chicken wire where bees can drop their wax and nectar, and a thinner top box where bees can store excess nectar for beekeepers to farm.

O’Donnell informed attendees about how the flavor of honey changes depending on the season, how to keep hives alive through the winter, and how to keep pests including mites away from a hive.

People looking to start their own hive can buy bees from certain vendors online. O’Donnell said it is also possible to take a hive attached to a tree branch and place it next to a home hive filled with sugar water.

Be advised: sudden movements anger bees and make them prone to sting people.