Hah! The bees were up to much more than making honey. After posting that entry I was doing things around the house including laundry. The bee hives are located by the outside wall next to the laundry room. As I was loading the dryer I heard a very loud and persistent buzzing outside. I checked the Twitchy bees, their hive is four supers high and could use another one soon. They were no more active than normal but four feet away the Playa Vista bees were in berserk mode. There were bees on the ground, on the front of the hive and zooming all around above the hive, lots of bees, very active bees.
The little dog in the previous post got curious and was wandering near the bees. Mainly out of concern for her I got her away and inside the house quickly. My other dogs have gotten bees tangled in their coats before, never stung, and now know to leave the bees alone. The youngster has more to learn.
I knew the Playa Vista bees needed more room but with a road trip in mid-May and some dog activities I was slow in addressing the issue. I had to get some new hive boxes, nail them together and make and install the wax starter strip in the frames. Six days ago I finally completed that work and added a third box. Normally I would have swapped a couple full frames from the second super with a couple empty ones from the new addition. The bees looked happy and I was preoccupied with other things so I did not do the swap. I did note a number of larger dark bees around the front of the hive. I was curious but not concerned with this, there did not seem to be any conflict between the normal small bees and the larger ones. Now I wonder if they were drones, going on or returning from a mating flight.
When I left the bees by the laundry room I did take time to note there was no fighting, my first guess for the cause of the activity. It was mid morning and orientation flights here usually occur around 2-3PM so that was not the cause. Once I got the dogs in the house and secured I went back out and could see bees flying next to a persimmon tree across the back fence in the neighbor's yard. I now had an idea of what was going on.
I went into the garage and donned my bee suit. Not positive of what was happening. I took a little longer so I could get my boots out of the truck also. I wanted to be protected just in case I found a big problem. I also went back and got my camera.
After an hour or so the bees had moved inside the nuc. ( I added the second bungie to make it more secure)
I have to decide on what to do with the bees. I do not really want another hive in my limited space but these are tiny feral bees and very easy to work. I do not want to give them up. I could give up the Twitchy bees instead but they have a four (soon to be five) super hive and are my honey makers for now. I do need some honey out of this deal.
I just checked and the bees are still there but this is no guarantee they will stay. I have had them stay overnight and still leave during the day.