My first beehive came to me rather fortuitously through an email with a small group of beekeepers. I just happened to be sitting at the computer when an advert offering a flow hive, bees, and all, for a rather paltry sum. Intrigued, I increased the offer to ensure my purchase.
And thus - the girls were mine. But now what? An inexperienced bee newbie on a late summer's evening, with a hive of angry bees and an empty wallet.
The bees were originally located in Marrickville, and their new home was in Dulwich Hill. As the crow - or perhaps, bee - flies, that's less than 5 kilometers door to door. Little did I know that the bees will try to return to their original location if they're relocated too close.
That was far too short of a distance. And if I were to simply move them, they'd return to their old home to a surprised bee keep. And the wallet drain would have been for nothing.
Thankfully, a beekeeper colleague very kindly came to the rescue and offered up his Dad's place in the Blue Mountains as a temporary retreat to stop the bees from simply flocking back to Marrickville. Thanks, Nathan!
For the bees - it must have been the trip of a lifetime. A one-month visit to the Blue Mountains - which turned into 7 weeks - would be enough to make them forget about their old home. The bees, however, weren't so happy about being so rudely disturbed and moved. Nathan's poor dad got multiple stings along the way.
When they finally arrived, we unwrapped them. They were ready to jump as soon as they were given the opportunity. I was a quicker runner.
Many lessons were learned that night. The most important of which? Always have the smoker fired up and ready to go before removing the wraps. This will help pacify them and save yourself some stressful running.
7 weeks later, the bees were ready to come home. A quick trip back to Nathan's dad's and back, and the bees were home in Dulwich Hills. The bee radars have been reset, and it was like they never lived anywhere beforehand. They were happily ensconced at their new home.
You may ask yourself - why go through all the effort? Why risk stings, empty my wallet, and have to travel back and forth multiple times ferrying bees?
The answer, for me, is simple. Their honey was delicious. From the start, I had been keeping a library of the honey from each harvest. For me, honey is the equivalent of love. You may even call me Yogi Bear.
So what should you do if you have bees, and they're not such welcome guests? Well, if you want to avoid strife, you should contact a pest control service. At Inner West Pest Control, we love bees. So much so, in fact, that we use an Integrated Pest Management plan in our services (IPM).
We prefer to relocate wild swarms rather than eliminate them. Bees are at risk of Colony Collapse Disorder, so we should do our best to preserve these wonderful insects than to worsen an already worrying problem.
And, if you're looking for any other pest control service in the Inner West of Sydney, be sure to contact us. View the rest of our website to learn more about our services.
I hope you enjoyed my tale of how I became a bee enthusiast.
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