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...and they lived happily ever after. Smith & Lady: poets, artists, photographers & adventurers.
Our relationship was forged to the soundtrack of Yoko Ono's magic,
frenetic, love-laden song, "Walking On Thin Ice." ( play song )

bees ness


Status 25

Bee sting venom burns.
Hand swell to lobster claw turns.
Dead bee’s life token.

– Smith, 6.27.2015

Thought I got stung on my neck yesterday during hive inspection, but thankfully didn’t. Could not be sure until I woke this morning with the normal size head folk usually see instead of one grotesquely swollen as if my ego let slip its true face. Most folk start swelling and itching as soon as they’re stung but for some reason it takes me 18 hours before stings start to swell and itch – until then, nada.

Lady got stung for second consecutive time, me the previous three inspections.

My first sting I took no benadryl and for the next two days my right hand just kept swelling until I had a large, red, itchy lobster claw. Third day it started to go down. Second honeybee sting lead to a swollen thumb for one day, the third to a swollen bicep for a day. The last two times I took benadryl pills (over the counter allergy medicine) because they lessen the venom’s effect.

She keeps imploring me to wear the hat with protective webbing, but I won’t do that unless they sting me so often or badly I have to . . . many beekeepers say your body gets used to stings after a while and that they’re actually beneficial health-wise, although I will wear protective gear when we harvest honey because that tends to rile them.

April 21 we dumped 10,000 Italian honeybees shipped from California into one hive box called a deep. In the two months since, we’ve added a second deep and two honey supers (more shallow boxes, maybe 25% smaller than the deep). The Queen lays 1,500 – 2.000 eggs a day, which take about 2 weeks to hatch, then they live 6 weeks and die . . . literally work themselves to death.

Our initial 10,000 will grow to 60-80,000.

And if things progress normally, this fall we will have honey.

Helping the planet pollinate and getting honey in reward is worth the occasional lobster claw.

Some dragonfly, arctic fox, dove, and spotted deer fotos follow.

dragonflystrangely colored dragonfly checking out our beehive
young arctic fox male at Queen Right Colony, where we buy our bee supplies. The fox let me pet him and he lightly bit my finger
Queen Right Colony dove
small spotted deer (about 1/3 smaller than American deer)
one-week old spotted fawn
fawn’s mom eyeing me, making sure my intentions are honorable

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