Saturday, January 31, 2009

Comb over

Right at dusk I went to fetch the bee log. I wanted most of the bees to be settling down for the night, but I didn't want to work in total darkness. Bees are particularly defensive then. Though they can't fly, they will crawl around and try to sting you if they can.
Well, I jiggled the log a little and blew into it and got nothing. No buzzing at all. Which meant there was nobody home, and all the bees I'd seen around in the day were scavengers.

I rang the guy's doorbell and told him. That's when I found out that the branch came down a year ago. So of course there were no bees in there. Nor honey, I'm sure. It's all been scavenged.
I wrapped a sheet around it anyway, and the guy helped me put in the car. I was able to carry it into my yard myself.

A big section of comb was loose. I brought it in the house to look at it.
There was one bee on it, a straggler from some other hive. I put her back outside.
The honeycomb can be used to lure a swarm into a beehive or keep it there. I could also make candles with it. It smells divine.


  1. That honeycomb is so beautiful. But I'm so sad that your hopes of a 2nd colony were dashed. Did I tell you that your experience inspired me to read "Bee Hive: The story of the Honeybee and Us" by Bee, ha! for real!, Wilson. Very interesting book, although there's very little in it about someone doing exactly what you're doing: tending to a colony.

  2. That honeycomb is so neat! And I had no idea that bees couldn't fly at night. Thank you for a new piece of trivia!

  3. Pam, I haven't heard of that book. I'll look for it. Most of what I've read about bees (aside from the funny old-timey book I bought) has been online. Glad to be an inspiration!

    I don't feel sad not to have more bees. I really just wanted the comb! It is very attractive to bees, so I will use it as a lure in a regular hive.

    Summer, at night and under 50 degrees. I originally thought moving bees or capturing a swarm would be easier at night, but they will assume you are a bear or other predator.

    Thanks, Rooie!