3/5/11

Your Bee Rescue Hotline at work: Hollywood Hills


Here's a swarm rescue report from Kathryn Bakken Robertson:

































Amy agreed to help take me on my first swarm capture this morning in Beachwood Canyon. Turns out it was smack in the middle of Sunset Ranch which made for an interesting audience of people, horses and peacocks.

































We arrived as they were clearing all of the horses from the area. The swarm was small, about grapefruit size, and hanging from the bottom rail of a corral gate. We geared up and Amy proceeded to spray the small group with sugar water then dusted a big clump of them into the box. We were encouraged by their descent into the box but there was a stubborn little group still clinging to the gate. We gave them a few minutes to figure things out.


























In the meantime, peacocks wandered over to see if this strange white box contained snacks, cocking their heads and watching intently. Then the 'rock star' peacock ambled over, pure white with a smattering of blue across his back. Horses and humans practically bowed as he passed through. Horses stuck their heads over the rail trying to nibble on the nuc box getting scolded by stable employees, "Charlie, get your nose out of there!"


































After a few more doses of sugar water spray and dusting most of them landed in the box. We taped it up leaving the small hole open in the front. We really didn't want to leave any poor bees to fate so waited a few minutes longer to get as many as we could. The small hole actually seemed to encourage them and just about all of the stragglers found their way into the nuc box. 

The people at Sunset Ranch seemed really interested in the whole process, taking some of their own pictures and expressing concern over where the bees would end up. They seemed relieved they were going to a good home (mine!). We carried the buzzing nuc box down the dirt road, waving good bye and promising to take good care of the Ranch Bees. As we got to our cars arriving tourists stared at us like we were another planet. In a way, we kind of are.


-Kathy



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