Drama in the hive

When I got home from work yesterday, I noticed honeybees swarming the 5 gallon bucket of water I have set outside  the chicken coop.  Sun was shining, no wind, temperature in the 60’s, perfect conditions for the bees to be out foraging for water after their long winter.

Side note-  (I do have a large container of water, not 5 feet from their hive, pieces of wood and various other things in it, so they won’t drown.   But no, these bees would rather travel five  hundred feet, and try to get water out of a 5 gallon bucket with nothing to grab onto.)

Taking a closer look, I noticed several bees in the water, at various stages of drowning, so I put some scrap pieces of scrap wood in the bucket, then one by one, fished the stragglers out of the water and plopped them on the wood.

Last night, right before dark, I decided to check on them one more time.   Sure enough, I found 15 soaked honey bees, dead on their little rafts.

I should say, they looked dead, but when I nudged  them with my finger, everyone of them stirred just a little.   Since our  temps were heading down into the 30’s last night, I was sure they would all be dead by morning.

So I took the two little rafts,  with the 15 honeybees into my warm heated shop, and one by one  gently place them on the heating pad I use for starting seeds.  Within 5 minutes all of them were moving around,  drying their little wings and grooming themselves.  Then, one by one, like fighter jets on an aircraft carrier,  they took off.  They instinctively headed for the large window, so I opened it and poof…..they were gone,  headed back to the hive.

This morning  when I went out to the shop,  all  but one of them were gone.

Here’s a 19 second  clip of them  on the heating pad from my YouTube channel:

(as you can tell, I’m easily entertained.)


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4 Responses to Drama in the hive

  1. Seeking Joyful Simplicity says:

    I love the compassion and tenderness you show for the bees. I wish there was more compassion and small acts of kindness in this world, and that we could focus more on the good instead of the negativity. ♥️

  2. You lovely man. On the bees behalf, thank you.
    Hubby and I love bees, and try to help out should we find one tired on the floor in need of sustenance by taking it to the nearest flower. I ‘saved’ a huge bumble bee I found in the storeroom by feeding it sugar water.

  3. Deb says:

    Job well done Doug. Now if you could just get them to read signs and go to the one that clearly states “Bees water bucket” you’d be all set 😉

  4. Fascinating!
    I’m sure you heard about the 180k-200k bees on top of Notre Dame sacristy that survived the inferno. One of a number of miracles that deeply moved me—especially the golden cross standing above the blackened rubble lit by a shaft of light.
    I’m glad your bees were okay and that you take such good care of them. We need our bees.

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