About noon a mass of bees started swarming in our backyard. By the time I got home from work at 5:30 pm, there was a cone-shaped hive that had formed in a low branch of a tree right off the back lawn area. Needless to say, my new puppy Willow would have loved to investigate, but we kept her on leash when we went into the yard.
Meanwhile, I called a contact from the Lane County Beekeepers Association (just a few months ago I had contacted them about keeping bees on our property and they had given me a couple names…lucky eh?). Brian, a beekeeper from the River road area, drove out immediately to collect the hive. Within an hour and a half of placing the call, the bees were safely tucked in a large plastic tub in his truck! He said the bees were calm because they were gathering for the evening to keep warm. He estimated there were about 10,000 – 15,000 bees in the huddle. I don’t know if it’s called a “huddle,” but that’s what it looked like.
It was a fascinating process to watch Brian calmly cut the branch and dump the bees into his bin. I was staying well back — in the house to be exact! I’ve had enough bee stings in my time. But Neil, daring as he is, was only a few feet away snapping photos; hence the great photos!
Bees are in short supply these days, so it was neat to help this swarm find a home! And hopefully sometime in the future, we might house some beehives on the property.
Ah, life in the country!