Sunday, April 10, 2005

Fingers Crossed

One of the things that interests me about beekeepers that really know these creatures (present company definitely not included) is that they all seem to be both reverent toward bees and absolutely at ease with the bee-y carnage that comes from working with them. It's just impossible for something as large and clunky as a human to deal with bees without sending loads of them off to the next realm, and this (for me) is very hard.

It looks, today, as if maybe we have two successful installations, however: bees are going in and out of both entrances, and I think I saw bees waving their butts around at the front door as predicted (they have Nasanoff glands on their stinger ends, and they wave them to emit a scent that says "this is home!")

But there are dozens of dead bees on the roof, and mysterious bee bits showing up in odd places, like the bathroom floor and the washing machine. I feel terribly sorry for each one. This, perhaps, is where an urbanite lacks the perspective of farmers and all, who see life through to death every day.

One funny thing this afternoon: the native bumblebees were out in force in the back yard. I had only seen one before this since Spring started, but I saw three simultaneously one time (and there was more than one time).

I was spying on the roof hives with my binoculars today, though we both ran into our charges many times during the day: I guess they are getting the hang of the landscape. There are also lots of yellow spots on the skylights: I am betting this is bee poo, and it makes me very very happy. There are lots more bees alive than dead. Let's hope we can keep it that way.

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