Saturday, January 07, 2006

Unhappy Girls

Christmas Eve was warm, so I decided that was the day to check on the girls in the hives. Even though it was in the high 60's they weren't pleased about my nosiness.
There were two dead hives, too few bees to stay warm, and two weak ones that I joined up. I had to move some of the hives so the sun could get to them. The girls flew low and covered my ankles. I should have used duct tape over my socks. There's no brushing them off when your hands are carrying the hive to a new stand. It was more the actual pricking of my skin, rather than the venom, that made my ankles painful that night! Imagine poking needles all over your ankles. I took benedryl and lavished them with lanacaine before going to bed for 13 hours! Thank goodness my immunity to the venom held up. All was well but the bruising in the morning.
The girls who valiantly defended their homes died. I got off easy. It hurts more to have lost them than to have been stung by them. Their loss may be the difference between that hive living through the winter or dying due to too few bees to stay warm. Spring will tell.

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