Saving the Honey Bees-one swarm at a time

A call came in one June day. Honey bees had swarmed and landed on the eaves of an old farm house. They were working their way behind a boarded up window.

“Please can you come quick, otherwise I’m gonna kill them with poison, there are thousands and they are just hanging in big clumps.”

It’s not easy saving the bees one swarm at a time, it takes time and money. These bees were 90 miles away. I had to drop everything I was doing at the moment and load my truck with the necessary items. You never know exactly what you will find when you get to a site. I arrived just before dark, the bees were now making their home behind a board covering an old window. I had to disassemble that and remove the window frame all working 15 feet up a ladder.  After three hours and 5 stings the majority of the bees were contained in a box. It was a large swarm and it was not easy removing them from behind the window. They had already started making honey comb and once bees begin making a hive, removal is much more difficult. For us, the time and money we spend is well worth the sweet reward we get in the end, all the while helping our environment.

 

A swarm in May is worth a load of hay
A swarm in June is worth a silver spoon
A swarm in July ain’t worth a fly
-Old bee proverb
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They had already made a lot of honey comb in just a days time.

 

Swarming is the process by which a new honey bee colony is formed when the  queen bee leaves the colony with a large group of worker bees. In the prime swarm, about 60% of the worker bees leave the original hive location with the old queen. This swarm can contain thousands to tens of thousands of bees. Swarming is mainly a spring phenomenon, usually within a two- or three-week period depending on the locale, but occasional swarms can happen throughout the producing season. -wiki

Honey bees are dying off at a rapid rate across the nation. Bees are crucial to the successful pollination of local crops and fruits. Some fruits are 90 percent dependent on bee pollination. If you see a swarm of honey bees please call a local bee keeper to capture the swarm of bees before you call an exterminator. Don’t expect to be paid anything from the bee keeper, after all they did you a service by removing the bees.

 

 

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