Monday, June 13, 2011

Mini Me

I don't know why but I admit it came as a real surprise.

I put the swarm I got last week in a hive that I took to my parent's place.  The plan is to keep it there a week so the bees can reorient.  Then I'll return them to the bee yard.

The surprise was the amount of interest my mother is showing in the bees.  In fact she's been spending quite a bit of time observing them.

When I arrived with the hive I noticed she had put rocks in the bird bath for the bees to land on.  She'd also set out plates of water with twigs as landing boards.

The next day she commented that some of the bees aren't very good fliers.  She noticed that sometimes they bump into each other at the platform.  She witnessed caretaker bees carrying out their dead.  She watched them stick out their tongues and sip water from the damp paper towel (which she keeps re wetting for them).

Then I heard that she was feeding them honey.  She remembered me telling her that I would take my pails and empty combs back to the bee yard for the bees to lick clean.  After she emptied a honey pail she put it and the sticky spoons out for the bees to lick clean.  And they did.

Yesterday I was at their place for dinner and was informed that the bees had found a food source.  I watched them flying in a bee-line up over the house one after another.  I wonder what food source they'd found.

For a new hive I've noticed they aren't eating much sugar syrup.  I guess they don't need it.  On the weekend I'll move them back to the yard and do a hive check just to make sure everything's okay... but looking from the outside and their busy-as-bee activity I can tell things are just fine.

So after hearing about all this interest from Mom I'm left thinking that my enthusiasm for insects may have come from both parents.  After all, they say the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.  And we all know who pollinates the blooms.
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