A couple of weeks ago, I was given some equipment by a man south of Metter. He quit keeping bees about 25 years ago and had some hives stored in his barn. He agreed to let me have them if I would get one of them set up with some bees for him in exchange. My son and I have been working on the hives: cleaning, scraping, and painting them. All the frames had to be culled, but most of the other equipment is still in good to great shape.
After so many years stored away with no bees, the leftover propolis inside the hives smelled just as good as the propolis my bees are using to glue up the insides of their hives. I’ve read there is a risk of contracting American Foulbrood associated with putting bees in used equipment. American Foulbrood spores can live in the equipment for decades. While we have no reason to believe the hives ever had fouldbrood, we are still going to use a blowtorch to scorch the insides of the equipment just to be safe.
In the slide show, you see the hives we have been refurbishing as well as some pics of the hives we already had. The tall yellow hive is the one we set up in March. The short yellow hive is the one we setup up with Rossman Italians 2 weeks ago: