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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Lesson #8:Everybody Poops. Even Bees.

Checked in on the new hive today. I've decided this hive is full of meanies. Since the day we put them in, they've are more aggressive, louder and well, just kinda rude. I've read that bees' temperaments vary from hive to hive. I guess this is true because #1 has a lot more bees but they are nicer, calmer. They don't fly up out of the hive when you open it. They don't go looking for the tiny little open crack in your bee suit and they don't buzz around your face as if they are cursing you out like hive #2 does. Or maybe #2  has just been mimicking Greg's foul mood these last few days....

While doing a rutine inspection of new hive #2 I started feeling a tickle on my leg...inside my suit. Whatever crawly thing that had gotten inside was big but I did my best to stay calm. Bees can smell fear too ya know. I told Greg I had a hunch that a bee was about to go in for the kill and I waited for the fiery burning sting at any moment. But it didn't happen. Greg just laughed at me and told me not to worry- that there wasn't a bee in my suit-how silly. So we carried on with our work. I walked stiff legged from one hive to the other, afraid to pinch the little bee at my knee. Good thing my bee suit is so huge its hard to see what I'm doing under there. I tried to keep my composure while we were finishing up but I was FREAKING OUT on the inside.

We checked the new hive for a good pattern of eggs and there was. If you find more than one egg in a comb cell you know you are in trouble. Its a sign that worker bees are laying eggs because they don't have a queen. Its like they are confused and panicing and lay eggs whereever they find a spot. One little rice-shaped egg in each individual cell is a good sign! The queen is free and doing her work. We also borrowed a frame full of larva and nectar from #1 and gave it to #2 so they could catch up. We read that in a book or something....

Anyway when the inspection was over I hurried back to the house to tear off my suit before that little trapped bee had a chance to let me have it. I took off the suit and shook it out but no bee....nowhere. I do have evidence of her presence however. See that little yellow blotch on the back of my shirt? Bee poop.

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