Monday, May 16, 2011

The bees that got away

First the construction workers told me about a swarm around the corner. I went and looked at it, came back to get my gear, and in those few minutes the bees flew away.

Then there were two swarms more than 15 feet up in trees. Too high for me.

Then there was a swarm on a very rainy day when I needed to drive to the airport. Someone else got those bees.

And a swarm that showed up while I was working.

Finally there were these bees:
This very tiny swarm landed at a garden center where I'd left my card two years ago. It was a windy day.
I was disappointed with the size of the cluster, but beggars can't be choosers. Certainly the location was easy. Right at eye level in a potted fruit tree. I spread out a sheet on the ground, tipped the tree over the box and gave it a good shake.
The bees seemed really lethargic, but those that landed on the sheet dutifully marched into the box, so I knew I had the queen.

When I got home, I tipped them into the hive and closed it up. At first all seemed well, but later the Sergeant said the entrance seemed awfully quiet. Then it rained for many days.

When I looked in the hive this morning, they were gone. Argh.

BUT. I got another swarm call tonight, so I'm going to pick it up first thing in the morning. Cross your fingers!

P.S. Yes, I started fiddling with blog layout. I'm not sure I like it, but I can't get back to the old version.

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