Friday, April 8, 2011

Third Time is the Charm!

Tonight as we finished supper, Mark got a phone call.  Birney Imes again. This time the bees were in Columbus, at a local coffee shop.  He said the bees were hanging off a sign, two feet from the ground.

Good-bye, quiet Friday night at home. Hello, bees! Because it was getting darker by the minute, we threw our gear into the truck and sped toward town.  At a stoplight, we saw our friends Jay & Gay, who seemed highly amused by our excitement about our "date."

We arrived at Kudos (which was closed) and couldn't find the bees anywhere.  Mark asked an employee at the gym next door, and he hadn't seen any bees.  I began walking toward a far corner of the parking area to investigate a small metal sign by the driveway.  Mark was in his truck, prepared to drive around the neighborhood looking for the swarm.

Then I saw them, covering the corner of the sign, facing away from the building and the parking lot.  Right next to the road!

Mark set up the bee box in record time.  He sprayed them with sugar water, and I held his atlas underneath them to serve as a slide.  With one strong WHAP on the back of the sign, he knocked the bees into the box. The put the extra frames in, put on a moving screen and top, and loaded the hive in the back of the truck.  It took less than 10 minutes.

We drove out to Barhams' Bee yard, and called Frances en route so they knew to expect a truck driving around in the dark.

This is BB1 (white) and BB2 (yellow), the latter of which arrived just yesterday. The lack of numerical order is going to bug  me.

BB1 had to give up their feeder when the new hive arrived yesterday, but we think there's plenty of nectar and pollen to be found, and they were going like gangbusters on Sunday. They should be fine!

The newest hive, BB3, is in the center.  We had to take this jar feeder from the hive at our house because we don't have any feeder boards available, and our order won't be ready until Friday (we'd hoped for tomorrow since we'll be in Alabama for a wedding anyway).

Tomorrow we plan to work our yard on Bee Hill, remove the feeders from 2, 3, & 4, add supers to those three, check to see if we need to add supers to the rest, and then take the feeder boards and feeders to Barhams' Bees on Sunday.  We'll likely take a few Back Saver 1000 hive stands too, to expand that yard.

We have just 2 more hive covers at this point, so if we get more than 2 swarm calls next week, we'll have to get creative!

We were alerted to another swarm earlier today, but it was on campus at the chapel, and the bees were about 35 feet up on the carillon tower.  Since it's Super Bulldog Weekend and the location was nearly impossible to access, we had to let them go.  I hope they found a better home on their own!

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