Friday, February 21, 2014

Skep Beehives (Part 6 of 8): Tanging

This is the sixth part in a series of short articles on skeps in the Medieval through Renaissance periods.

Tanging the Bees
Beekeepers watched for swarms. This would involve a lot of time in May and June. This implies that swarm beekeeping was for career beekeepers. The beekeeper would tang the swarm to get the bees to move from one hive to another. (Crane,1999 p333) Tanging is striking two metal objects together to make a loud noise. It was believed this would cause the bees to go into the new hive. The swarm would develop into a new colony, store honey, and may even swarm again.

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