It's been a while since we fed any bees, so today we made the trek up to the farm to feed two hives. One, affectionately (or maybe not so affectionately) dubbed "the mean hive," and another that was our first real attempt at a top bar hive. We decided to feed the mean hive first, since we don't really like them. They have pretty strong defensive mechanisms, and ever since we've gotten them they've been difficult to manage. Plus, they like to sting, and stung me straight through my jeans once.
Kwao removed the cover and went to crack open the back top bars to access the feeder, while I stood by with the sugar water. Two things happened at once - one, Kwao realized that the back bars actually had comb on them. Two, every single bee on or near that comb immediately attacked us. Kwao had about 20 stingers in his gloves right away, and I was covered in bees trying to sting my pants and shoes. Thankfully, we had properly suited up for this feeding.
Anyway, we basically took off. We had to brave the bees once more to replace the cover, but that was the end of working with the bees today. We settled for eating some guineps and going home instead.
A fun plus: my family arrived this morning to visit me and came to see the bees today, so now I'm going to spending the rest of the trip convincing them that this is not at all a normal experience. Oops.