Friday, April 10, 2009


This weekend Austin the Incredible was accosted by a swarm of bees in our backyard!

He hid inside, with the doors and windows locked while the bees buzzed around.  [side note- California has been invaded by Africanized Killer Bees... according to numerous city and government webpages, most swarms of bees in Southern California are Africanized and extremely dangerous.  Local authorities warns to avoid these bees as they are VERY aggressive].  After awhile, the bees seemed to have moved on.

The next day, The Incredible heard a lot of buzzing coming from our big charcoal grill.  Upon further investigation, he discovered this:
(this discovery was followed by a rapid retreat to the great indoors)

This is not yet a hive... just bee upon bee- all stacked on top of each other!

It should be noted that these are NOT bees of the African and Killer variety... so far they have shown no interest in chasing us into the house, harassing Nora, or displaying their aggression in any other way (great feats of strength, grunting and lifting heavy objects, etc).  So after some online research, we determined that they are honey bees (ahhh).

While we are trying to suggest a relocation for our new buzzy friends, I have stumbled across interesting bee news.  Honey Bees across the US are disappearing at an alarming rate.  Honey Bees are responsible for pollinating over 100 different yummy foods- like avocados, apples, almonds, soybeans, peaches, pumpkins, oranges- that amounts to about $15 billion of US Agriculture.

In recent years, beekeepers have lost nearly 1/3 of their hives to unknown causes.  Without Honey Bees, a big chunk of US Agriculture is in danger.  
I've found these great sites that discuss the plight of the Honey Bee.  This site, by Haagen-Daaz, has fun interactive facts and info regarding honey bees. 

This site encourages people to plant sunflowers and record the bees that visit their garden.  And I think they send you sunflower seeds for free! 

The bees moved in Tuesday afternoon.  They still seem pretty content to stay in their BBQ grill.  I would like to use that grill sometime in the future but my eyes have been opened to the mysteries of the honey bee and the difficulties they are facing.  I might even plant them a few sunflowers- away from the porch and grill!


  1. AnnA
    I bet the local honey growers would love your bees! I'd give them a call and have them relocate the bees.

  2. we tried that- but honey people in CA are afraid of Africanized bees and won't even come out to check the bees out. But they left on their own- on Easter Sunday. It was pretty cool- in less than a minute, they 'dripped' off the ball of bees and flew to our neighbors house. not a trace of them left. So ends my bee saga...