Re: Testing a hive for defensiveness
Wildbranch, sounds like your buddy has a death wish. MB's advice is similar to my way of checking. Open the hive without smoke and make sure the inner cover makes a loud cracking noise as you do. If the girls are sitting on the top of the bars looking at you, they are not defensive. If a tornado of bees erupts from the hive and your veil is being pelted by bees, they are defensive. If they follow you several hundred feet while pelting you, they are hot. I envy those guys working their bees in shorts and a tee shirt.
Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.