Mark Frauenfelder at 11:22 am Wed, Aug 5, 2009
ADVERTISE AT BOING BOING!
Mister Jalopy says: "Not a great picture, but I was leery of getting any closer. A swarm of bees have decided to create a hive under one of the bicycles in the long line of faded champions at Coco's Variety."
What can he do about this?
UPDATE: Amy Seidenwurm came and got 'em. Thanks, Amy!
@24: there are no small casts, only small fishermen.
wait a day, they’ll leave.
The stage where a swarm sits on a branch in a cluster like this only lasts a day, or, at most two days. They’ll fly off to a permanent location once the scouts find one.
When a hive throws a swarm, they tend to first land for a day or two at a low point, conveniently for beekeepers who want to collect themselves a new colony. They usually locate their actual future permanent nest in a more protected location than this. Scouts are probably flying around trying to find a hole in someone’s nearby wall right now.
When he was very young I told this story to my son. For reasons of his own, it’s one of his favorites:
A friend and I were goofing off in a field when we came upon a migrating bee swarm. We took the skeleton of an old Christmas tree and rammed it into the swarm, then ran like pigs.
“What can he do about this?”
In my experience, ram it with the skeleton of a Christmas tree and run like a pig.
What a great mix of informative and hilarious* replies this post has generated. I’m proud of us!
*Still chuckling at #14.
Recite your ABees&C’s a few times and maybe scare them away with bad Engrish?
I have one of those electrified tennis racket bug zappers if you need it (you have to supply two c batteries).
just leave them bee
Yeah, but does it move like a butterfly?
Whatever you do, take care that you don’t wind up covered in bees!
Buy a new bike?
Ride it! and leave your bike lock at home!
Apparently it was only a B-list ride anyway.
Forget the bees…..what kind of bike is that in the foreground?
#44 posted by timquinn:
That was an incredibly funny forum thread.
sell the honey and buy a new bike.
#37 asks “what kind of bike is that in the foreground?”
Seems to be an electric bicycle. They’ve been cropping up a lot lately. Bees like a basket on their bicycles, but don’t like the buzz of the electric motor- maybe it’s saying something the bees don’t like or agree with. Hmmmmmmmmmm (translation: honey is actually no better than processed sugar).
#48 Of course all comments were entirely serious. #31 is my favorite.
And make sure you use a long handle (like a duct taped broom) or be prepared to suck and run then rinse and repeat.
Smoke ‘em until they swarm elseplace – and take precautions against setting fires and these being Africanised bees.
I’d give the bike a good swift kick. That’ll knock off those pesky bees…
Yep. That’s what I’d do!
Let the bees make a new hive? We need the colonies! But really, you have to move the queen, and that takes an expert.
Damn bike hipsters, first fixies, now bee beards: they’ll do anything to get noticed!
I would not recommend following this fellow’s course of bee mayhem:
If you can get the queen into a beekeepers box the rest will follow. Call a beekeeper. :)
Glad to read that Amy came and removed the swarm, but the article at the link failed to mention the Backwards Beekeepers link for future reference:
Now, carry on and bee good humans.
They are very non-agressive when swarming (unless maybe they are africanized). Collect the swarm and enjoy the honey from your backyard bee hive, following instructions for collecting them and raising in simple, handmade top bar hive from a site like this:
Or find a local beekeeper in the yellow pages and they will be happy to come collect the swarm.
Bees swarming are — if you leave them alone — docile. When you see a guy with a bee-beard, it’s because they’re swarming. I held a swarm in my hand during an entomology class in college.
FREE BEES WITH BIKE PURCHASE
Call a beekeeper. Duh.
Problem removed for you, free bees for them.
Possibly the best way to keep people from stealing your bike ever.
Swarms looking for a Tour de Los Angeles. Luckily Lance Armstrongs outta town.
Seriously if you get on some head protection & long sleve shirt, grab a box w/ top (filing boxes w/ handels taped shut are best) & shake the majority/ or all into the box. If queens in the box the workers will follow.
Then keep for a beekeep to place in permanent location. Do this the sooner the better as the bees are slowly digesting their nectar in gut & their taunt abdomens can bend moreso to sting as well as they get grumpier just as we do, the hungrier they get. Have fun bee hunting/ gathering :).
Cheers, David Sneiders in San Gabriel Valley
take a couple shots, put on two thick sweatshirts, hop on that bad boy and pedal as fast as possible.. throw in some wheelies for style points.
All this advice was well intended but misplaced. If you ever see a swarm of bees, even one as tiny as this was call a beekeeper. Being in the city your animal control should have the name of one or even the police department.
From the Wikipedia article entitled ‘Swarming (honey bee)':
A swarm may fly for a kilometer or more to the scouted out location. This collective decision making process is remarkably successful in identifying the most suitable new nest site and keeping the swarm intact. A good nest site has to be large enough to accommodate the swarm (about 15 liters in volume), has to be well protected from the elements, receive a certain amount of warmth from the sun and be not infested with ants.
To which we might add: ‘The ideal nest site will not have large wheels attached.’
I love bees. Found one yesterday, on her back struggling to turn over. I righted her. She looked so tired as she staggered a little and fell over on her side.
These gals work themselves to death, until their wings are too tattered to fly or they just poop out. That’s a good communist right there, and that’s why mankind isn’t good enough for Communism. We’re too selfish, so it doesn’t work.
Be kind to bees please.
Right when I decided that I’d probably never need the services of a beekeeper and deleted the number from my phone…
“Beewitched and Beewildered? Fret not. Using our patented BeeGone(TM) technology, you can put the days of worrying about finding your bike covered in bees to an end. At only $19.95, it’s practically free. Can you really put a price on peace of mind?”
I think the bees may have been attracted by the SWEETNESS of the electric power system on the bike in front.
Find a nearby beekeeper. They will be more than happy to collect the bees.
Or go with JIMH’s suggestion!
Well, of course the most important thing that you can do is
Yeah. In all seriousness, find a beekeeper. Try the California State Beekeepers Association: http://www.californiastatebeekeepers.com/swarmsinfo.htm
And when the keepers come out to collect it, video it and put it up on D&R. It’s a really interesting process, IMO.
This is an easy one.
Mix equal parts salt and baking soda in a grape juice bottle. Shake thoroughly. Place in the freezer overnight.
Next day boil for three hours and decant into as many hot water bottles as you can find.
That should do it.
“beard”? Unrelated but sweet:
Would that it were a Stingray.
If you ride it, will that make you a honey buns?
Surprised I’m the first to mention it, but I’m pretty sure Bears LOVE HONEY. I’ll let you academic types connect those dots. Thank me later.
1. Wait until beard of bees weighs 15 pounds.
2. Become Abe Simpson.
3. Wear 15 pound beard of bees.
4. Attract the oldest woman in Springfield
Yeesh. Don’t kick the bike, and don’t smoke them off. Call a local beekeeper, and they’ll happily rush over to collect the swarm. I certainly would, as I have a hive sitting empty, waiting for a swarm.
Your local pest control, fire dept, and possibly also police dept probably has a list of beekeepers who will catch swarms. A local beekeeper association would be an excellent first choice if you can figure out a phone number.
Also, don’t attempt to catch the swarm yourself unless you know what you’re doing.
That doesn’t actually look big enough to be a full-blown swarm; they’re significantly larger and more impressive to witness (size of a baseball rather than a bike saddle.) It’s probably a small cast rather than a prime swarm. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swarming_%28honey_bee%29 (dig the pics!)
Delicately paint the bike orange and black, then hope for Bicyclized Bees.
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