To Bee or Not to Bee

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I have been fascinated by bees for a loooooooong time. In fact I wrote 2 term papers when I was  in school about bees. Several years ago a bee club started in Powhatan and we were approached about selling bee supplies.   My dormant interest returned.

I have been wanting a bee hive by my garden to help with pollination but I just have not been able to talk myself into the extra work a hive requires.  I have enough projects and things to do but I wanted one.  I found myself weakening.

Right now I have the best of both worlds. A customer brought me one of his hives.  All I have to do is check on the hive every couple of days and I have a hive of busy, active bees to observe.

I am so thrilled with the “squatter” hive.  I stood at a distance and watched as the hive was set up.  All seemed calm and peaceful.  I can handle this!

I waited one day before returning to the hive to check one my “warriors”.  I had been assured they don’t usually sting and that I could probably even lift the lid and look in.   With my camera in tow I stood 6-8 feet away and snapped a few pictures.  Then I just stood quietly and watched, minding my own “beesiness”.

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Suddenly I was attacked by one of the “calm” warriors.  He gave his life to show his dislike for me!!!  Instantly I heard the familiar ‘buzzing” sound and there were things moving around in my hair!   I immediately became a moving target, swinging  my arms like bats and swatting, smashing at the creepy, crawlers on my head.   You can only do so much when you have a camera in one hand.  Amazingly I only got stung once. When I looked in the mirror I saw the little rascal had left his stinger behind in my neck, which I gently pulled out.

I have learned lesson number one.  I should approach the hive from the side or back so they don’t think I am a “threat” and need to be dealt with in proper and timely fashion!

Today the beekeeper came and checked on his hive and put sugar water in the top feeder.  I stood at a “safer” distance and took pictures.  All was well in bee-land.  I did notice he had his smoker sitting on a nearby post!

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