WMAES has an observation beehive that you can view from the cafeteria window. There is a bee safe box that holds 8 frames and a hole in the wall with a tube that leads to the outdoors. The bees come and go as they please without ever making contact with humans. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out- please do! Or ask your student to tell you about it. This weekend we had a swarm happen…and found them on the side of the building.
For whatever reason (usually space) the colony decides it needs to swarm. Future queens are prepared, in queen cups and before any new queens emerge, the existing queen and about half of the bees in the colony leave the hive, searching for another home. The first queen in the old hive will hatch and make sure she becomes the only adult queen, while the remaining bees consider her their new queen. We now have two colonies, each approximately half the size of the original one, living in different locations! Isn’t Science COOL?
We have a video of Mrs. Rodenberg, also known as Ms. KR when she taught science here, brushing the bees into a nuc hive in hopes that the queen falls in. If so, all the other bees will follow her in. Which is exactly what happened. Ms. KR will raise the bees at her house with her 3 kids and maybe she’ll share some honey with us.
Watch the video on our Facebook page.