Backbone of Agriculture
Mrs. Pondero has a way of getting me involved in projects I otherwise would be satisfied in having as mere topics of discussion. You might say that I find her simply irresistible.
Bee Stuff in Pickup Truck
Some of our family and friends know that she's been gearing up to begin a honeybee project out here on the north Texas prairie. It began months ago with the research, ordering of the hive kit, assembly and painting of the hive, more research, ordering of the bees, and yet more research. That part of the project was actually becoming a little interesting. That part of the project didn't involve any encounters with actual bees.
Today, however, was the big day. This was the day we encountered actual bees. The post office called Mrs. Pondero and asked her to kindly come fetch her bees. I was then told that WE would be transferring bees who had been confined, transported via postal service, and long since out of patience to their new home. How could that not be fun?
So we loaded up the bee stuff and and went out to the back corner of the property which has recently been rezoned for agriculture. Since that area doesn't have any trees, Mrs. Pondero thought it would be a good idea to build some kind of shade. We almost finished it before the bees arrived early. When was the last time I received a package EARLY? I understand now that I'll be finishing construction in a highly populated fly zone with no air traffic controller. I can't find words to express how much I'm looking forward to that.
We didn't get any photos showing the actual transfer activity. But we did get this photo...which is me testing out the amazing zoom capabilities of our new Canon camera.
Basically, it was me reading instructions while Mrs. Pondero bravely saw front line action. We were all business. Well, mostly SHE was all business. As she poured bees from the shipping container into the hive, several decided to buzz around. So I read instructions at auctioneer pace, finished my job, and ran for cover. All I can say in my defense is that SHE was the one wearing the bee suit.
Not every bee made it out of the shipping container. Most went in directly as desired. Several simply did not pour out as easy as the instructions suggested they might, and an astonishing number were buzzing around my head. All in all, however, Mrs. Pondero seemed satisfied that there were enough honey-making bees inside the hive for today. In fact, she said that there were several bees going IN to the hive as if they were being called by some separated buddy. So we took the tools back to the house.
After things calmed down a bit, we strolled back to check on things. We were pleased to see that almost all bees came out of the shipping container and (apparently) went in to serve their queen as expected. Or maybe they were just hungry and got a whiff of that half-gallon of sugar solution that was poured into the top feeder. Either way, it seems the transfer was largely successful.