Bee Delay

Yesterday I worked some more on digging out the perimeter of the foundation for the new shed. The slab will have footings around the edges in order to include anchor bolts. Otherwise it will actually sit on the grade, rather than being sunken like some of the other slabs we've made. So there's not much digging to be done.

Digging out the foundation for the shed

I made decent progress on it, but had one issue, which was that I kept getting dive-bombed by bees. I actually went and put my bee suit on because they were being so obnoxious. It was a really hot day so the bee suit was really unpleaasant.

These bees are too close

After a few hours of that, we decided that we'd take the time to move the bees further away, and not try to set up the formwork that day. For the most part the bees were not being too aggressive, but they were being extra obnoxious and I didn't want to accidentally roll one of them and get stung.

That night we moved the hives over some more, but the bees were all angry. There were guard bees flying around in the dark which is no fun for anybody involved. Noel got stung while we were moving the hives, and later when I thought the bees had calmed down I went out to check on them and I got stung.

Hives moved over in front of the chicken house

We decided to let them calm down a little. In the morning we looked out and they were doing their orientation flights, but they were agitated and kept going and circling the area where the hives used to be. That's where we would be working, so we decided discretion is the better part of valour and did not spend the day swatting off upset bees. I did take some time to add a box to Hive A which has been growing like gangbusters. Hive B has a super full of honey that I need to harvest, too.

Two and a half pallets of concrete

The only thing that went according to plan (sort of, with two days of delivery delays) was that the concrete did finally show up on Saturday morning. The delivery went very smoothly, and while I am not looking forward to hauling all that concrete into the back yard, at least we didn't have to also make fourteen trips to the store to pick it up.

We're planning to take a day this week and make the shed foundation, assuming the bees calm down after a couple days in the same spot. I will say that I do not move bees around much, and this is why. Also this has me really thinking about how long I want to be keeping bees, as we get older and the work does not magically get easier. That's a conversation for another time, but for the time being the bees are in front of the chicken house and with any luck will stop hanging around their old digs and let us get in there and dig the footings for the new foundation.

posted by ayse on 06/13/21