The hives in my backyard are ready for the bees that arrive tomorrow. A local commercial beekeeper is picking them up in Georgia. They’re probably on I-95 right now.
Their arrival has been delayed for two weeks. Cold weather prevented the queens from mating. It seems that bee amore is dependent on temperature.
Speaking of lovers, these will be Italian bees. Most managed bees in America these days are of that sub-species because it is less aggressive. Why sting when there’s honey to be made?
Old hands at beekeeping recommend naming or numbering hives for record keeping. Our niece Isa painted the one on the left in bold, abstract colors. I’m calling it Tuscany, the birthplace of some of the world’s great artists. Her sister, Olivia, opted for a simpler design, a bee house with windows and doors. It’s Calabria, the pastoral region in the heel of the Italian boot that is the home of all my ancestors.
Come back tomorrow for pictures of the bees moving in. I’m planning to play a Caruso aria to keep them calm. It worked for my old man.