Monday, July 18, 2011

Driving with Bees

I hate driving with bees.  Have you ever found there was a bee in the car as you were driving along?

Now imagine getting in the car knowing that there were 6,000 bees in there with you!

This post could also be called "Things A Mother Will Do For A Child"....or "How Motherhood Makes You Do Stupid Things!"

Josiah had the opportunity this year to serve as a counselor at a Christian camp owned by some friends of ours. This is a good thing.

Josiah had a bee hive that was SO strong and SO full of bees that he was concerned it would divide itself and swarm.  This is a good thing.

The protocol for this is to split the hive yourself before the bees decide to do this thus preventing a swarm and any loss of bees. You divide the hive, making sure you don't take the queen, and the new group of bees will make their own queen. This is also a good thing - it is like getting a free package of bees. Bees are expensive.  We are saving money.  Keep telling yourself "free bees..."

It gets ugly when you discover that you have to MOVE the new bee hive several miles away for a month so that they "re-orient" themselves.  If you keep them at home, they will just go back to their former hive.  So...essentially you have to provide a vacation spot for your new hive for a month. Which means you have to TRANSPORT them somewhere...IN YOUR CAR!

The owner of said camp is also a beekeeping friend of Josiah.  Said camp is 30 minutes away from home.  Well over the miles needed to keep the bees happy. Josiah and said owner decided that he would BRING HIS BEES TO CAMP for their vacation re-orientation and so that Josiah could keep an eye on the new hive and feed them. This is a good thing?

Of course you realize by now that all of this means that I have to chauffeur the bees to camp!  My children don't like me to drive wearing beekeeper's gloves, hat and veil. They say it is embarrasses them. This is a bad thing.

I'm just thinking of survival.  Better to look silly than be covered with a thousand stings. 

However, Josiah pointed out to me that the bees would be in shock (I think that means they will be angry) and probably quiet (I think he is lying to me to make me feel better) on the trip.  He also promised to duct tape any and all openings, put them in a plastic trash bag for the trip and cover the whole thing with a sheet so that any escapees would still be under cover.  This is a good thing.

I wonder how they will feel at the end of their vacation on the drive home.  

Hopefully not as tired and grumpy as we usually are.

I comfort myself with the idea that when Josiah gets home we will be extracting honey from our hives.  This is a good thing.


  1. Oh my goodness!!! Doesn't sound like fun to me!

  2. Shall we say it is a "tense" drive. I'm not looking forward to the ride home. It's not bad in cold weather - they are much more docile. And to come home we will need to do it at night - ACK! I won't know when they are getting close to me!


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