My neighbor called to tell me that the bees were back. We had a dead tree (yes, that same wonderful tree that decided to hug my husband's car with one of it's branches) that was home to a group of honey bees last summer. Luckily, they kept to themselves and we all kept to ourselves.
It seemed that several were flying about the bottom section of the tree yesterday morning as well as a tree that is in my yard. It is my favorite, my Cherry Willow tree.
And as I looked at the bees swarming near my tree, I noticed a brown spot on an upper branch.
They seemed to be flying around more, were all over my car, and then my neighbor noticed they were crawling all over my driveway. And I was standing there, like an IDIOT, in my BARE feet. God was watching over me because I somehow managed to not step on any. They were within inches ALL AROUND my bare feet!
So here is my mass of bees. Look at all of those bees. And being the gal that I am, I ran in for my camera to take loads of pictures and several close ups so that I could figure out what type of bees they were and what I should do. Sure enough, they were honey bees.
I kept my girls inside, which for them wasn't a big deal because they both seemed to be feeling under the weather (I think bad allergies) and I kept my animals in as well.
These bees were actually very nice. After talking to a bee keeper's daughter, that was actually one of my first grade students when my oldest was born, I learned a lot about these beautiful creatures. And I also knew that if I moved about slowly, I would be okay.
This is a picture I took later in the afternoon when it was hot and they seemed to be having "sleep" time. They weren't really moving around and I stepped under my tree to get this shot. If you click on it you can see just how many bees there are.
My dad found some bee keeper numbers and found this one who said he would be happy to take the bees for no charge, as long as he could reach them. I learned a lot from this couple (husband and wife) and the girls did as well once we knew we were safe. And of course, being me and also being a former teacher, I had to document the entire situation. I actually stood just a few feet away during the entire event.
The bee keeper actually stood on his ladder, and simply cut the branch out of the tree.
Once he was down, he simply whacked the stick into the bee container. Since the queen made it in, the rest followed. It took a little time, but they all pretty much made their way to the box.
I thought there were maybe around 1000 bees. He told me that they go by the weight of the group, which he felt was about 1 1/2 pounds. I asked, "So about how many bees is that?"
"Oh, about 7000."
OH MY GOSH!
I know I am a big goof, because I actually think these bees are precious and so beautiful. They were all furry and had big eyes. I probably wouldn't think that if they stung me, but they just seemed really neat. I can see why people get into this hobby.
Once the bees were all in, they just taped up the box and loaded it onto the back of their truck.
And here is the Queen Bee that my oldest drew on our front porch. As crazy as it all was, it was a nice event for our day. A little educational, and a good distraction from the crazy things in my life right now.
God does work in mysterious ways! Hope you enjoyed our adventure!