PIQUA – On Monday, Aug. 9, Jeff Pollard checked to see if his new beehive had produced enough honey for harvesting.
The bees are Pollard’s new favorite hobby. He stumbled into beekeeping unexpectedly one day while he was working in his Sidney business, Sidney Tire.
A regular customer of Pollard’s pulled in with a trailer that had a flat tire that needed fixing. The only catch was there were six beehives on the trailer.
The beehives’ owner had been taking the bees to a farm sothey could pollinate a farmer’s plants when the trailer got the flat tire. The bee’s owner told Pollard that if he didn’t bother the bees, the bees wouldn’t bother him. So Pollard’s men jacked up the trailer with all the bees on it, removed the tire, patched the tire and then replaced it, all without any bee stings.
Pollard became intrigued by the bees and started talking to the repeat customer about them whenever they came by. Eventually Pollard purchased 20,000 bees including one queen.
The bees were brought in from Siberia in Russia. They had to be kept in customs for two weeks before they arrived at Pollard’s rural home located between Sidney and Piqua.
Pollard has tried to find a hobby he liked for a while with little success until discovering beekeeping.
“I love it. This is my hobby,” Pollard said. “I come out here every morning and check on my bees. I’m just getting into it.”
Pollard’s wife, Heather Pollard, was not as excited as Pollard about beekeeping. Pollard said she thought he was crazy. But she has come around full circle and is very interested in learning about them.
Pollard was hoping to harvest some honey but after looking into it believes it needs a few more weeks of filling up. He said the honey is taken from the top sections of the hive only. Honey is never taken from the bottom two sections of the hive.
Pollard plans on giving away the honey his bees produce to friends and family.