Amma in Dallas – June 17-18 2017 – Green Initiatives / Greenfriends

If you plan to see Amma on 17-18 June 2017 in Dallas – be sure to stop by Amma’s “Green Initiatives” and “Greenfriends” tables.  There you can see the honeybee observation hive from Harmony Hollow Apiaries and talk about our native pollinators, pollinator-friendly plants, and our agricultural pollinators, as well as information about Amma’s global agriculture and farming initiatives.

Through the day on Saturday and Sunday – activities and information will be available for both children and adults.

Event website link:  Amma in Dallas 2017

Event Facebook Page:  Amma in Dallas 2017 – Facebook Event Page



Metal Roof Bees (video in link)

This video really shows more of the opening process and then the closing up of the structure afterwards.  These bees have been in this space for a few months. The thermal camera was almost useless on the days I was trying to get a reading. The metal roof was hot, even on cloudy days. (I think the bees would have regretted moving in if we had gone through summer!) A fairly simple removal – new enough that I treated the bees as a swarm, and have them re-hived in a new box without any of their comb, since theirs was so soft.

Link to my YouTube Channel for you to “like” and Subscribe to my videos:
Harmony Hollow – YouTube

(Background music: Trevor Hall – Hanuman Chalisa)


Cauldron Bees (video in link)

This honeybee removal was about the size of a valve-box removal. The bees had lived in the inverted decorative cauldron in the bushes since this spring. The comb was pure white (new) – and the queen had a solid laying pattern of eggs and brood. They had a decent amount of nectar in there as well.

Link to my YouTube Channel for you to “like” and Subscribe to my videos:
Harmony Hollow – YouTube

SS Minnow – Boat Bees (video in link)

Bees have been in this boat for at least 2 years, according to the comb color, texture, etc. The comb wound up being quite a challenge to remove, as the fuel lines, steering cables, electrical lines, and more were all running through the rear space of this boat. The bees, however had a very good demeanor (despite having been vacuumed into a collection box) – and were moved to the bee yard with minimal protest by the bees.

Link to my YouTube Channel for you to “like” and Subscribe to my videos:
Harmony Hollow – YouTube

Golf Course – New Hazard in the Rough! (Video in link!)

The City of Allen owns a golf course – and it was reported by a patron that honeybees were in a knothole of a tree on the 14th hole.

The facilities manager was concerned both for the safety of their customers (the public) as well as having a humane and live removal of the honeybees performed.

After evaluating the tree and surrounding area, I offered 3 options

  • Trapout
  • Forced Abscond
  • Cutout (chainsaw the tree)

My recommendation to them – when taking safety of the public into account, was to perform a trapout.  A 1-way exit would be placed over the bees’ entrance, and an alternative box be mounted to the tree for the bees to use until they all are out of the tree.  After 2 days, I added a frame of eggs and larvae for the bees to create a new queen with.  (getting the queen from a trapout is a tricky proposition – and when she finally absconds – it’s sketchy as to whether she will use the box provided)

Here is the timeframe of the trapout activity:

4/12/2017 – Inspection/Evaluation
4/14/2017 – Trapout Begins
4/16/2017 – Frames of eggs and brood added
4/21/2017 – (queen cells *should* be capped)
4/24/2017 – Trapout complete – all bees out of tree (and 5+ queen cells on the frame of eggs/brood) –  Box FULL of bees and nectar.  Tree hole screened over, and nuc box removed at dusk – and taken to one of the Harmony Hollow bee yards
4/28/2017 – (Queen cells *should* be hatching)
5/3-4/2017 – Appx Mating Flights dates

This trapout was VERY fast compared to others.  In many cases, it can take 6-8 weeks for all the bees to exit the hive.

Below is a fairly long video.  It may be a little dry for some folks… but for us bee geeks – it’s as golden as the contents of Marseillaises Wallace’s briefcase in Pulp Fiction.  😉  (Yes – there’s an Easter egg in the video)


Link to my YouTube Channel for you to “like” and Subscribe to my videos:
Harmony Hollow – YouTube

Stargate Bees – Downed Tree Limb

This property houses a Stargate portal to an inter-dimensional bee hive located in a tree limb that fell from it’s host tree last summer.

The rotted section of limb fooled me at first (as this WAS performed on April 1 !) – and the bees were ABOVE the knothole, instead of below it.

The queen was found a few yards away from the workspace when a cluster of bees started to form about 10-15′ away from my work location.  The queen was quickly captured and placed with the rest of the comb, bees, etc in the 5-frame box.  Then they were all left overnight to re-assemble in their new home – and picked up the next day.. and exit through the Stargate portal to the Harmony Hollow Apiary bee yard….

Link to my YouTube Channel for you to “like” and Subscribe to my videos:
Harmony Hollow – YouTube


Seeking Farmers for Pollination of Nectar Crops

Actively seeking farmers and/or landowners for the 2017 crop season.  North and East Texas preferred – however will travel Texas if the crop is right.

Honeybees brought in will provide pollination services for the farmer to make sure his fruits/seeds have a full “set” to the blooms.  These blooms also have nectar flow for benefit of honeybees and honey harvest.  Please contact Harmony Hollow Apiary via phone or email to discuss opportunities. ( – or 469-251-2BEE (2233) )  Or if you know of a family member or friend that I could contact – please let me know.

Looking for any of the following:

Chinese Tallow
Black Oil Sunflower
Clover or Sweet Clover / Alfalfa (if left to flower and go to seed)
Hairy Vetch
Organic Cotton
Mesquite Tree

Garden2Table Event – March 25, 2017

Come see the observation hive and let’s talk about our pollinators at the Garden2Table educational event.  I hear that Heather Rinaldi of the Texas Worm Ranch will be speaking immediately prior to my time in the breakout sessions.

Join the real food revolution by attending Garden2Table, hosted by Methodist Charlton Medical Center.

Garden2Table is an educational workshop that focuses on best practices and resources for better urban gardening, healthy food, healthy lifestyles, and food safety practices.

Presentations include:

  • Beneficial bugs for your garden
  • Building your garden from the ground up
  • Tapping into your roots
  • Kids’ Gardening Club for children (third grade and up)
  • Canning and preserving the harvest, and more


Click link for more information – and to register to come to this FREE event.  (there may be vendors, though – so come prepared to learn in the breakout rooms, and to support those who support our ecology)

On Saturday, March 25, 2017 | 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Methodist Charlton Medical Center | Auditorium
3500 W. Wheatland Rd. • Dallas, Texas 75237
The Auditorium is located by the Outpatient Center entrance.

Poetic License – or Sacred Spirals – Soffit Removal

Bees moved into a home in Poetry, Texas at least three years ago.  The homeowner loves bees, and really does not have a problem with them being here – however when it was time to hire a contractor to do some routine maintenance and upgrades – the bees needed to go – so that progress could be made.

On initial evaluation, I used a thermal camera to determine as best as I could – the location of the bee colony.

According to the heat-signature, they ought to be in the lower soffit area.  The bright yellow/white in the photo is heat rising off of the cluster of bees, and radiating through the roof decking and shingles.

On the day scheduled for the removal, the soffit was opened, and the bees were exposed.

Of note in this picture below is a unique egg-laying pattern:  Also known as a “sacred spiral” – it appears that the queen started her initial egg-laying pattern in the center of the comb, and made a spiral outwards.  Then as the eggs hatched to larvae, were capped and developed to pupae, the cappings pronounce the spiral.

This hive was VERY highly populated.  A full 8 frames of eggs and brood were saved and transferred to standard frames for a commercial hive.  The bees were all collected (along with the queen) – and taken to the bee yard – and recombined with their comb/eggs/brood – where they are doing well.

Once the space was scraped of all the wax, the soffit void was filled with insulation, then the soffit and crown molding trim was put back into place, and the seams caulked.  (note:  The last piece of crown molding was left off for the contractor to match for other repairs on the property.)



Valentines Eve – Joist Space Removal

The homeowners had purchased this home last year, right about the time I’d estimate that the bees moved in (based on the comb color and condition), however the home itself tells a story about bees occupying the space in years past – based on the residue and remnants from wax moth in the space.

During the evaluation of the colony last week, a FLIR thermal camera was used to determine the exact location of the bees.    The yellow is the heat signature of the bees in the joist space below the bedroom.  BEcause this showed that it was very close to the wall, it was decided to access the colony from the outside (instead of opening the floor above the bees)

Before, and during the opening of the siding.






After opening the siding and exposing the bees, here was the view:

The comb was removed, and the bees clustered back in the joist space against the fire-block.  They were collected, and recombined with their combs of eggs and larvae  at one of the Harmony Hollow bee yards.

The joist space was filled with insulation, then the home was reassembled.