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Thread: uncapped honey

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Danbury,Ct. USA
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    I had 8 hives die on me. At first I thought the good news was that I had 16 deep supers of drawn comb for the new bees. About a third of it was capped honey which is no problem. Another third was partially filled pollen frames. A few were totally empty. The rest are what worries me.I am surprised to find that they contain so much uncapped honey. I mean a lot of it!
    Since I've heard that uncapped honey will ferment ... I don't know what to do with it. The only thing I can think of is to extract it and throw it away.
    Questions:
    1. How can I tell if it's fermented either before or after extracting?
    2. Will it make my new bees sick If I let them clean up the combs after extracting it?
    3. Can I just give it to them and trust them to clean up the mess?
    I'm open to all suggestions.
    Thanks guys,

    Dickm

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    Honey does not ferment because it's uncapped. There are two reasons for honey to be uncapped. One is that the bees are not done drying it. If it has too much moisture it will ferment. The other is that they uncapped it to have stores available. If it was winter or too early for a nectar flow then it's uncapped because it was open stores. If so, it will not ferment. It is good honey. Don't waste it. Even if it is fermented (it will smell like yeast if it is) you can feed it to the bees with no harm. Bees can drink alchohol with no ill effects.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    brown county,indiana,usa
    Posts
    571

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    i've heard if honey is green or unripe it will run out of the comb easily when tilted,i've fed fermented honey to bees before without problem.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Danbury,Ct. USA
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    Thanks guys. BTW what does yeast smell like?

    Dickm

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    Bread raising. Oh, I forget no one in this generation has ever smelled that. Hmmmm how about T.J. Cinimon rolls baking minus the cinnimon?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Lineville Iowa
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    66

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    Micheal,
    you say that nobody in this generation
    rembers the smaell of bread rising
    how about the smell of wet chicken feathers
    while plucking chickens ??
    sorry if this getting off topic ,but i have some very vivid memories of the smell of
    scalding chickens and plucking the feathers
    back in the days of my childhood .
    Zeke

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Danbury,Ct. USA
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    By the way, Mike ...I'm 69 and could possibly have a smell or 2 in my data bank that would surprise you. Especially since I grew up on a farm. My favorite smell now is beeswax. I presume yeast would be a sort of a sour smell? Anyway thanks for the advice. I'm more relaxed about using my honey.

    Dickm

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    >By the way, Mike ...I'm 69 and could possibly have a smell or 2 in my data bank that would surprise you. Especially since I grew up on a farm. My favorite smell now is beeswax. I presume yeast would be a sort of a sour smell? Anyway thanks for the advice. I'm more relaxed about using my honey.

    Sorry, it just occured to me that describing it as the smell of bread raising may not be sufficient for a lot of people. If you're 69 then you have smelled bread raising, and that is the smell of yeast.

    I have also smelled wet chicken feathers many times, but I gave up plucking them years ago. I just skin them. In fact I need to kill and skin a few right now. They keep running of and having chicks faster than I can keep up.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    Just another observation that occured to me when thinking of a generation that doesn't really know what bread rasing or baking smells like...

    Have you noticed that 30 years ago the advertisments would brag about "food like mom used to cook"? Now they brag about "food like grandma used to cook". It took me a while to realize that mom can't cook. Only grandma knows how to cook anything from scratch in most peoples familys. How sad. My Grandpa taught me to cook.


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