"United we bargain, divided we beg."

Saturday, February 6, 2010

I am NOT afraid of bees

My new mantra. I am NOT afraid of bees, I am NOT afraid of bees, I am NOT afraid of bees....

Actually, I really am not terribly afraid of bees. Wasps, yes. Yellow jackets, paper wasps, hornets... I am totally and abjectly terrified of those things. But honeybees and bumblebees are nothing to be afraid of. They aren't aggressive, they are beautiful, and everything they do is beneficial to us. In fact, we likely couldn't survive without them.

Which, as I'm sure y'all already know, is a big big problem, because they are disappearing fast. Some ideas are beginning to emerge regarding Colony Collapse Disorder (ARS : Questions and Answers: Colony Collapse Disorder) and the research tends to implicate certain pesticides as well as mites and other diseases. But definitive answers are still far away, and certainly a cure is nowhere on the immediate horizon.

CCD has not been a major problem where I live, so far. I hope that it will not affect ..... my NEW BEEHIVES!!!!!! Yes, it's true. I decided not to wait another year but to bite the bullet, gird up my loins, put on my big-girl panties (pick your silly metaphor) and order some bees. I asked on Craigslist for a mentor, and found a nice guy who lives just down the road and is happy to help me get started. I have to clean out my old hives (which I bought off Craigslist a few months ago) and get them in shape to accept my bees, which should arrive in late March or early April.

Today is my trial by fire - the neighbor is going to open up his own hives and check things out and he invited me to come watch. I have a hat with a veil and long gloves, but I need a set of zip-up coveralls. I'll be very very proud of myself if I get through today without a galloping case of willies. Or at least if I can keep the willies under wraps. Like, not scream like a little girl and run away. I think I can hold myself to that standard.

Unless a bee gets inside my face veil.


Rachel B. said...

I want bees so bad! My dad and I were suppose to do it a few years ago but it never happened. I think we have a hive but I have no idea how it looks. Perhaps next year I'll start my own hive since I believe it's a little too late now.

Unknown said...

Hey, good for you! More people should get bees. We have several and we live in the middle of the big city. They are not as crazy as you might expect :)

Olive said...

Hi Aimee, I have a very sad story to tell. We have had a bee hive AND all the gear (veil, smoke pot, overalls etc.) for a little over 20 years and it has NEVER been opened. Its something dear Popeye HAD to have. I really think he is afraid of them, but he'd never admit it.
Had a chuckle about you with the willies as his real name is, wait for it .... Willi !!!

kathy said...

Wish you the best of luck with your bees. I have thought about getting them myself, a friend of mine tried it down the road and it didn't work for him. Eager to see how it goes. Keep us updated.

Jerry said...

Awesome. I hope this went well for you.

I am determined to get a couple of colonies to start with but its proving to be a pain in the ass to do here. Hard to find the bees I want (Russians) OR used hives. On goes the search tho.

Good luck with yours.