Sunday, September 27, 2009
Right now I should really be helping Stephen develop some 500 photos that are due tomorrow but I needed a minute to rant!!!!
A couple of years ago Stephen happened into trying to save a hive of honey bees. Now for those that are unaware honey bees are disappearing at a rapid rate. With bees disappearing the price of produce is climbing. This issue will only get worse until bee keepers across the world can bring the bee population back to a rate high enough to pollinate enough produce to meet the consumer demand.The last bit of information that we read indicated that bees are under government protection. To kill honey bees could cost you a nice hefty $500.00 fine! I suppose we need to do the research and verify if that is indeed still the current law. With our with out government protection one would think that with most local news channels buzzing about the missing bees most people would be aware that killing a swarm of bees is not a good idea!
At the time that Stephen saved his first hive there where two other people with him. Those people wanted to rob the honey from this enormous hive and let the bees fly off and either find a new home or die. Stephen's one good Samaritan hive is now 8 hives buzzing up our back yard.
In the process of all this I got sucked into the bee saving missions. I have learned quite a bit about bees, their life cycles and their purpose in this world and find myself as focused on saving them as Stephen is.
One of the men who was there when Stephen got his first hive lives only 2 houses down from us. Today there was about a thousand bees laying dead in this man's drive way. We heard of this because a local cop stopped us and ask if we knew what was going on and why those bees where dead. Of course we had to go see what was going on.
Apparently the man's wife saw a swarm of bees in their drive and instead of calling some one to remove them (most people charge for this service, we NEVER charge for removing bees) .. she politely takes a can of bug killer and sprays the swarm!! THIS IS SOOOOO WRONG TO DO!!!!
Stephen was so mad, but just informed the man that what his wife had done was against the law.
There where still a lot of bees swarming around and we couldn't find the queen in the pile of dead bees. So we picked out box and I went into the house to find some lemon grass oil. We happen to store the extra boxes next to he bee hives, so in order to get to them we have to walk right in front of the 8 active hives.
I came out of the house with a q-tip that had half a drop of lemon grass oil on one end of it. (Lemon Grass Oil attracts bees). As I walked in front of the bee hives bees pretty much swarmed all around me and followed me to where Stephen was waiting with the bee box.
We then went to where the dead bees where and set up a box with this q-tip inside it. I of course had lemon grass oil on my hands. I wanted to recheck the pile of dead bees for the queen. As I was looking for the queen bees where buzzing me.
The photos above are of the bees going into the box to get the lemon grass oil. We are hoping to catch enough of them (and the queen) to save the swarm.