Saturday, June 11, 2011

The Bees At The Times

The Bee Rescue Hot Line received several calls about bees on a balcony at the LA Times building.  This was outside the old Executive Offices level, now vacant except for the odd movie, commercial shoot.  There was another shoot scheduled for this weekend and they were anxious to have the bees removed ahead of time otherwise the exterminators were coming.  Kudos to the Times staff for being persistent and kept calling until we showed up. 
The bees were in a small kumquat bush, on the outside overlooking downtown LA.  The swam turned out to be a hive.  It had been noticed only a couple weeks ago but there was a lot of comb under the hive that must have been torn off in high winds, there was nothing up here that could have caused that damage.  Sorry, there are no pictures of the hive before we went to work.  I brought my camera but not the battery.  The hive was well established among the branches.  The only way to get it was spray them with sugar water, add a bit of smoke and start clipping branches and leaves.  Amy Seidenwurm gave me a hand getting the job done.  There was not enough space for two people to work.  As the comb was cleared of foliage, I clipped the main branches and dropped them into the nuc.  The frames had been removed from the nuc.  Once all the cob was inside, I gradually removed the comb and Amy put it into the frames which were placed back into the nuc.  We saved all the big bits with some brood and a little honey.  The odd thing was the amount of swarm cells, five or six, that we found and removed. 

When all the comb was inside I put the lid partially on the nuc and removed the plug so the bees had plenty of access.  We left it there over night and when it got darker and the bees were inside one of the valiant maintenance men went out, put the lid full in place and plugged the nuc entry.
When we arrived early in the morning, Roxanne brought a laundry bag to cover the nuc.  Great idea, it works better than the sheets I used in the past. 
The bees over looking Los Angeles.  Their new home would be in the San Fernando Valley with quite a different view but lots and lots of plants and flowers to work.

The Bees at Disney Hall.  This was a very easy pickup and the staff and the LA Times was great.  They could have easily killed the bees and no one would have noticed.   Special mention should be made of Jim Rasmussen who would not give and kept calling us. Thanks to Amy for her help and Roxanne for providing a home for the bees.  Backwards Beekeepers Bee Rescue Hot Line Forever!!

This is an unedited piece with Amy using my Flip for the first time.  It takes so long to upload that I did not try to edit the piece.  It is seven minutes long and not thrilling but you get all the cuts.  LOL  This is almost live but not quite. It is The Times and The Bees raw unedited.  Don't expect music or an announcer voice.    This took eight hours to upload, be grateful it is here at all.  LOL


Marcia said...

You have used sheets to !! wow, I thought I was the only mad person to wrap a bucket of bees up in a sheet, tie a knot in the end and drive like the clappers to my hive !! Well, when a sheet is all you have, these things have to be done ..

Dennis In The Dale said...

I will be switching to the laundry bags, it is much easier and better. We had to pt tape over a couple of holes but that was easy. I will get one for the nuc and a larger to fit supers.

Anonymous said...

Good job buddy! That warmer weather in Cali gives you a lot of chances to get those swarms. Course, helping to maintain the Bee Hotline helps too, lol. Hope all is well. -Mark