Thursday, June 28, 2007

More bees!

A block away from home, Sophie and I rounded the corner and saw some people standing around a downed tree that was in the process of being removed. The homeowners were lucky – the tree came down in a wind storm the other night and fell between the garage and house. They only lost a gutter.

The tree-removal guys got a surprise, though: Bees had set up house in the trunk (not sure how high up). Since it's illegal to destroy a hive, they cut that chunk and lowered it to the ground, tying it up so it wouldn't fall over, and a beekeeper is on the way to collect them.

I recently read and posted on "Following the Bloom," which made this encounter that much more interesting.


  1. Great pictures Kitt plus the Following the Bloom post. I knew that beekeepers in the UK moved their bees to the moors for heather honey but didn't realise bees were moved on such a scale in the US. Fascinating

  2. Great pictures. You are brave! Is it a Colorado thing about it being illegal to destroy a hive? Or is it national? I've never heard that. I wonder where they will end up and if they will like their new boxy white house as much as their old tree?

  3. I agree - great photos. I bet the workers were surprised! Interesting article - and I never knew you couldn't destroy hives either. I have stirred up nests of mud wasps working in the compost pile - that's always fun!

  4. You know what, I spoke too soon. As far as I can tell, there is no law against destroying a wild beehive that I can find, though in some cases it may be illegal to use pesticides to do so. Most of the sites I looked at said you should find a licensed bee removal specialist, who generally will attempt to save the colony if at all possible.

    Unlike wasps and hornets, bees will generally ignore you unless you disturb the hive, even if you are really close to it. I was about two feet away from this hive, and all the bees were simply coming and going around me. When I leaned in closer, a few guard bees started buzzing around my head (instead of just flying past), so I backed off.

    As long as you move slowly and don't swat at the bees, there's no problem.