Friday, 10 May 2013

The whole story about the bees in Marchenilla

Prospero The Intrepid
in a self-serving photo
(more below, but more
JIMENA Your intrepid reporter on Wednesday donned beekeeper's gear to help an old friend take care of a hive that had taken possession of a tool shed. The thing came about when Prospero was asked if he knew anyone who would remove it - you can follow the thread of it on Alberto Bullrich Ward's Facebook page. To put you in the picture, and remembering that Prosp knows nothing whatever about bees except that they can sting and they make wonderful honey and they are crucial to pollination and that just the other day the EU banned the use of a pesticide (or something) that was killing them in the millions - we were saying before a little knowledge got in the way, that Antonio, who owns and used to run what used to be called The Honey Bar, now La Parada, by local expats (twenty years ago) for obvious reasons, came to the shed in question prepared to start the process to remove the bees but unprepared to climb over gates given his and Prosp advancing years.>>>

When eventually access to the property was secured and climbing over anything taller than a bucket was removed from the equation, the swarm (enjambre in Spanish) was easily found, but its size was disappointing. Never mind, by now the mission was on.

The way these things are done, we're assured, is that a proper hive (colmena) is left as near as possible to where the swarm has gathered. This was marginally difficult, as it was in the top corner of a small, crowded shed. The hive was left outside, as close as possible to where they entered. It has to be left there for a day or two or more - and they, clever creatures that they are, will decide whether or not they like their new home.

That decision made, the hive is then covered and removed after sundown, when they are asleep. There is a caveat: live creatures, including bees, need a permit to be transported in a vehicle.

The end of this story will probably take place on Monday, so watch this space...

As bee swarms in inconvenient places happens quite frequently in these parts, here are a few tips:

Bee = abeja
Swarm = enjambre
Hive = colmena
Beekeeper = apicultor
Help = ayuda or ¡auxilio! (the latter in an emergency)

If you have a problem, the best thing is to call your LOCAL police, who, if there isn't a beekeeper among them, will know a local one.

Many beekeepers are reluctant to remove a swarm that is very difficult to access and involves such things as knocking down part of a wall, or anything similar. Payment should be offered, even if they take a hive away for their own commercial purposes.
The Honey Chase on PhotoPeach

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