2012-12-20 Ghostly bee rustlers

Our bees were no longer welcome in Northcote, a grumpy neighbour had approached me and made it clear that they were not welcome in these parts. After a few false starts, we eventually found a friend of Adrians who has a large property in Alphington, who was willing to take them on board. Moving bees can be tricky, you have to move them a long way, otherwise they return to the original location, hovering around wondering where their house and queen have gone. The rule of thumb is either move them a kilometre, or move them a metre. Just a metre and they work out where the hive is, Over a kilometre and they are disoriented, and make up a new map in their little bee brains. This makes it tricky if you want to, say, just move the hive from one side of the yard to another.

Anyway, Adrian came around and we found a great spot at Kates place, who is lending the girls her yard. And what a yard it is. A little bit sheltered, no evening sun, plenty of native trees and also lots of flower beds nearby, in a sloping garden bed full of grasses and native shrubs. Plenty of water nearby. I can confidently say that Metropolis and Other have one of the best views of any hive going.We cleared an area and flattened it, put down a couple of pavers as a base.

Moving the bees was quite difficult, the boxes are heavy, maybe 50 kilos, and we had to man-handle them through the garden bed in the dark. Best to move bees at night, when they are all tucked in bed. If you move them during the day, you lose a lot of bees, as a lot of them are out foraging, come home and the hive is gone. The euphemism for this is "moving the caravan while the kids are at the beach".

Anyway, all good, finished up around 11. I was stung a few times, nothing major. Adrian unscathed, but he is careful these days.

Jazmina took some long exposure photos at Northcote, below. Thanks!. Ghostly. Adrian in the full suit. No pictures of the new location yet, maybe next time.

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