Approximately 14 minutes in duration.
Dan Worley is a lifelong resident of Latimore Township, Pennsylvania, and was a public school teacher for 32 years. Now retired, he taught in the Northern York Co. School District, with an emphasis on science. After graduating from Messiah College with a B.S. in Biology, Dan received a Master's Degree in elementary education from Penn State. His wife, Karen Worley, who is a graduate of Wilson College, taught music for 35 years in the same district. Karen retired from teaching and is an organist and a member of the organist's guild. Dan and Karen have two sons, Daniel and Dave, who are both graduates of the Dickinson School of Law with offices in York Springs and York. Dan's family has done extensive traveling throughout the lower 48 states and Alaska, visiting many of our national parks and historic sites. Dan has also traveled to England, France, Belgium, Switzerland, and Italy. Dan's hobbies include hunting, fishing, drawing, making stained glass objects, woodworking, gardening, growing fruit, raising wild turkeys, bee keeping, and playing the musical saw and 5-string banjo.
A few years ago I became interested in carving ducks and took a course at an adult education class. Each member of the class carved a pintail duck, with the goal being to make it as realistic as possible. I got some pictures of pintails and started chipping away. After about four months my first duck was finished - a Pintail. Although it looks good, I was not satisfied that it was realistic enough.
About a year later I decided that I knew enough about the basics of duck carving to try my hand at a second duck. I chose a wood duck because of their brilliant colors and the fact that I had some wild ones to observe on my pond.
In order for the finished product to look real, both the carving and painting must be executed to the best of one's ability. Observing mounted or live specimens is much better than trying to reproduce a duck from a drawing. Patience is necessary because a considerable time commitment is required.
Acrylic paints are mixed to achieve the desired shade, and these paints are applied in washes to give them a natural look. Fluorescent powders are sometimes used to give an irridescent appearance duplicating the natural feathers. Different kinds of wood can be used depending on what the carver is trying to achieve. I used basswood for the three ducks I have carved so far. A good carving knife and burning tool are a must. Each feather has to be individually burned on the duck before the washes are applied.
Usually the head is done separately from the body. It is important to get the head done correctly, because this is the part that people see first. Individual feathers can be inserted at different locations to make the duck more real. The eyes are glass reproductions and are the only parts that are usually not carved.
For my third duck I decided to do a male mallard standing in some water. This was quite an undertaking because my first two ducks were floaters. It took several months to complete this duck. Carvers can buy feet made out of plastic or pewter, but I liked the idea of carving my own. After I finished carving each foot, I drilled a hole down through the legs and inserted a rod about the size of a 16 penny nail. This arrangement provided good support for the body, which is solid. I made the base out of a piece of oak and used grocery bags cut up in little strips for the grass. The water was made from a clear liquid epoxy. After the duck was finished it was sprayed with a fixative to protect the paint. To your right are the three ducks I have carved so far. A lot of time is involved, but the final product is worth the effort.
Bee culture is an interesting hobby for which you do not have to have more than one hive to get all the honey you need. Honey is a good substitute for sugar. When my wife makes homemade bread she use honey in her recipe.
I have a small apiary consisting of five hives and extract honey usually at the end of July. We heat the honey to 150 degrees to help delay crystallization and bottle it immediately. A number of booklets and pamphlets are on the market that can help you get started. Many companies sell starter kits that provide everything you need to get up and running.
There are few wild bees left, and because of this many orchards must rent bees during pollination to insure a good fruit set. Keeping and maintaining bees is a challenging task because of the diseases and pests that attack them.. Some of these are mites, foul brood, hive beetles and wax worms.
Besides being fun to raise, bees have an interesting society in which the queen, drones and workers have a division of labor that promotes the success of the hive. The bee dance that workers perform in the hive to show the direction of a honey source is unique.
A good book that will help you get started with bees and answer many of your questions is ABC and XYZ of Bee Culture by A.I. Root. There are a number of catalogs that sell bees and equipment. If you have access to a computer, look up honeybee supplies on the web. Many companies have free catalogs for the asking.
Included on this page are some pictures of my hives and supers full of honey. I hope that you might become interested in raising bees.