This was linked by a friend on TXGW.
Timely post. They're heeeeeeere.........the honey bees! I was out walking with my dog and started to deadhead a daylily when I heard a familiar sound - a thousand bees buzzing. Looked up and there they were like a bee tornado above the courtyard garden and in the privet hedge nearby. I walked around the back of the house quick to check the siding where they always try to go in. Last year I caulked that siding heavily, leaving no holes for them - I hope. So I walked on around behind the house to the front yard to get a better look at them in the hedge and sure enough they were swarming big time. Stood there a long time, and they seemed to be moving across the road and into the ditch. Then half of them started swarming across the road and right into the ditch, thought I saw a bunch take off across the field but not sure. So now there are thousands in the ditch and some still in the hedge, stretching themselves across the road like a barrier.
Wouldn't you know, the neighbors down the road, the visiting father and mother pull out of the drive in a convertible! They drove right through it before I could call out to them and I heard the woman exclaim. They stopped and talked to me about it for awhile. I stood and watched for another 20min. or so then walked back around the house to where I could see the courtyard and I think they have all or most have moved to the ditch on the other side of the road. The queen must be in there.
Just heard a motorcycle go by so went out to check, walked a little closer and got a good look at a huge swarm on the ground up against the side of the ditch. Either they are wild or someone has lost the bee colony out of one of their hives. This happens every year in June, sometimes a few (scouts?) sometimes the entire swarm.
There is old honeycomb in my house walls that they smell and try to get at, I can't afford to rip all the siding off and dig all the old comb and honey out. Have you ever smelled dead bees? They die over winter if they can get settled in there; there is so much caulking on that side of the house! ha.
Well, hopefully they move on by tomorrow morning and don't greet me at the back porch.
I just snapped this photo, luckily I have a great zoom lens!
Good news!I found a list of beekeepers on the internet, in my area who come get swarms.But after calling around and having no luck finding one to come get the honey bees, I finally sent an email - with the photo of the swarm - to someone who was listed and lived in a nearby county. They want the swarm and will come over tomorrow morning to get it, I just need to call them first to make sure it is still out there.
This is the first time I've had luck finding someone to take honey bees. I hope it works out both for the beekeeper and the bees.
Man, I'd be after that swarm if I was a bee keeper! I really would like to keep bees, but I find them DEAD all over my yard! I have no idea why, and I'd like to find out. I would love to keep bees.
The beekeeper and his wife brought an empty hive this morning, and the guy proceeded to usher the bees into it. It was a big swarm, he was lifting stems of poison ivy just loaded with bees and shaking them into the box. When he got most of them, he just waited and the bees marched right in, so many that they were all jammed up at the entrance trying to get in. He's pretty sure the queen walked in with them to amidst the mass of little bodies.
Now he'll leave the box here til morning to make sure all the bees stay around, thinking this hive is their new home.
Hope they stay for him.