An apiary is also known as a bee yard. Our outing today took us to Copper Canyon, TX (aka Argyle) for a three-hour bee-keeping class!
Our fabulous teacher, apiarist Juan Campos, suited us up with overalls, gloves, a 360 (aka hat w/ veil) and his enthusiasm. After a few minutes of intro and lecture, we headed out to the hives. Hives are cedar boxes with several compartments. The Queen gets to live it up on the bottom level, or brood box, surrounded by attendants and other female worker bees. There is a queen excluder grate between the bottom and next level. This level is where the bees live and work in the separate frames. They make, eat and live for honey! There have been hives as tall as nine boxes high, but the ones we saw were two levels high. They get very heavy when full of honey!
We learned a lot about bees, honey, leadership and management. An educational, fun, interesting day!