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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 )

not to bee


Our beehive is dying.

Our first hive last year was by-the-book successful for nine months, giving us 120 pounds of honey, then the first of February all the bees vanished.

We bought a new box of bees with a queen and dumped them into the hive end of April. Within the week the worker bees were building supersedure cells, which means they aren’t happy with the queen and want to create a new one.

We weren’t getting good egg laying with our queen and knew the bees weren’t happy, so we bought a new queen for $30 and installed her two weeks ago. They continued to build supersedure cells, and we can’t find her or any eggs, so assume the worker bees killed her.

The queen lays 1,500 eggs a day. Since we have no eggs, this means every day we’re 1,500 bees less than the day before, plus another 500 to 1,500 that die from old age every day, so our hive is disappearing. They won’t have enough to protect their honey from other bees.

Saw a couple hundred dead bees on the ground, so our first thought is pesticides. Farmers rotate their crops every year, so maybe this year’s spraying practices affected us . . . honey bees travel 2-6 miles to forage, and that includes a lot of farmland and pesticides.

Check again next week and take any honey we can, then start again next year with our third new hive in three years.

This is not the way it was to go.

Status Report 224

When I was 30
my poetic metaphors were
Elvis, Richard Nixon, and Marilyn Monroe

Now at 70
it’s Sisyphus and status reports

– Smith, 7.5.2016


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