Yes, I’ve been absent for a few months. But the bees and I are both back to flying now.
Only the Amazon hive made it through the past winter. I love those Amazons. Funny, I call them the Amazons without even thinking about it.
The fact that the Amazons, the hive I captured from a swarm two years ago, is the only of my hives to have successfully overwintered two winters underscores my determination to raise my own queens from survivor stock. I think it’s unnatural to order my bees and queens from Georgia or California as I’ve been doing, and I’m not gonna do it any more.
If I plan to raise bees successfully, I’d better get down to raising my own queens from my own strong surviving stock. Yes, it’s a big step, but I’m 52-years old and smart, and who’s gonna take the big steps if not me?!
I tried to sign up for an Ohio State queen-rearing workshop this year, but that workshop, which is capped at 50 people, was already filled. So, I called the lady at the Ohio State Bee Lab to see how I could finagle my way into the workshop. I got a little bit outlandish on the phone as I created these wild and scheming ways of getting in. I cracked myself up with my ideas, but the lady was a sourpuss. You know the type—type-A rule follower. Well, I’d already decided to drive myself the 3 hours up there in May with my $75 registration fee in hand and in cash and see if they turned me down. They would have let me in. I can charm my way into anything.
However, the thought of being in that Ohio State workshop with those people (whom I find dull based on experience at bee school these past two years) led me to explore further. And through a wonderful and serendipitous chain of one thing leading to another, I found Zia Queenbees in Truchas, NM, where I am now one of 12 people registered for a 2-day queen-rearing workshop in the mountains along the road between Taos and Santa Fe.
And I am totally flipped out with delight about it.
(Queen of the Amazons is at 7 o’clock below)