I've always been scared of bees, wasps, hornets, bumblebees, pretty much anything that makes a loud buzz. Blowflies can unnerve me. It's really the sound that gives me the heebie-jeebies more than anything. I think I associate it with pain since I got stung by a wasp and a yellow-jacket once (on separate occasions, ten years apart). As I've gotten older I try to hide it, but I'm still a little scared (especially of wasps and yellow jackets, not because I've been stung, but because those suckers will chase you). I've tried to take an intellectual approach to bumble and honey bees. They won't bother me if I won't bother them, that kind of thing. And I'm just a little fascinated by them and their behaviors (which are so freaking neat!) so I make a big effort to overcome my fear. I've been two feet away from the hive with no protective gear on and they've never bothered me. Still, when I hear that sound my instincts kick in and I get scared, which they can smell, which sets off their instincts, you see where this is going.
|The Husband wanted to paint them Island Orange, |
but after the pullover incident I
convinced him bright orange probably wasn't the best color.
|Building the Hives|
|The Queen and her Ladies in Waiting. |
Her majesty has a red marker on her
abdomen that you can just barely see in this picture.
So the packages came in small cages, with the queen and a couple workers in their own little compartment. First they removed the queen and put her in the hive, then they dumped the cages out into it. It was all going well until the bees became agitated. They sprayed them with sugar water in an attempt to calm them, and on one package it didn't work. The husband (who has always bragged that he could get close to the hive without a veil, got stung three times. It was pretty hilarious. He ordered a veil the next day). They must have done something right though, because they all went in well. We only lost one hive, and it flew away destination unknown. We aren't really sure why. Luckily we had a helpful customer with a swarm in her backyard and a party planned who called asking for help. Cousin Alvin caught the swarm and that replaced them. So if you are not a beekeeper and have an unwelcome swarm in your yard, call us and if we can't come catch it we'll pass along the info to the bee club and hopefully someone will. You can never have too much local honey!
PS, if you know someone with local honey (within 20 miles or so of Goldsboro) they want to sell, give us a call also. I would love to take it off their hands!
|The Brave One Dumping a Package|
|The Smart One dumping a package|