Re: Gentle Bees...what kind to get???
Hot breed; Queenless, hungry, predated, sunless day bees, with brood,un-smoked,wet, robbed, rocked (kids), manipulated by amateur (me), etc and etc.
Calm breed; Well fed, sunny, healthy, Queenright,smoked, not predated,dry, owned by experienced beek, etc and etc.
I am trying to bee funny.
I have one hive I captured from a tall Oak tree, they had lived there 9 months, had a complete nest. On any given day they are nice bees, they often come to meet me and later walk me home. Mostly they behave if the weather is nice and my smoker works. Just don't mess around, drop things, pop the top to loudly. Nice and calm begets nice and calm.
Off topic a bit. I carry a sheet of plexiglas and slide it under my flat top and inner cover. Then I remove the top and inner cover. No heat loss when cold, no bees in the face, can check sugar brick and somewhat comb honey, can get some visual info about hive condition. If all is well I reverse the action and never disturb (almost) the nest and heat balance. If needed I smoke under it, watch for girls to settle then proceed.
Julysun elevation 23 feet. 4 Hives, 2 years.