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Spring has arrived and with it comes swarm season. This is the time of year that Bees create new colonies by spitting the hive in what's known as a swarm. As scary as the word "Swarm" is, it's actually one of the most amazing occurrences in the animal world. If you have the pleasure of witnessing this event there are a couple things to remember.
1. Bees do NOT want to sting you! They are just looking for a new home. Don't swat at them. Calmly walk away. As a beekeeper I have collected many swarms without even putting on my white bee suit or even a pair of gloves. When swarming they don't have honey to protect and they need every bee to start building their new home.
2, Please do not spray the bees with anything. There are literally hundreds of beekeepers that will come get them for free. If you are in Humboldt county, contact the Humboldt County Beekeepers association or A&L feed in Mckinleyville. They have a list of beekeepers that will respond immediately. In other areas you can contact your department of agriculture, fire department, police department or your local beekeepers association. Every county has one.
3. Stick around and watch the beekeepers work. We all love to share our knowledge and educate the public. Bees are declining and we can't live with out them. Too many food crops rely on bees for pollination. The more people that understand what we do and how important bees are the better off we will all bee.
4. Consider keeping bees yourself. Again your local beekeeper association is the best place to start. We love new members or as we call them "NewBees". Bees are amazing creatures and an active hive in your garden makes an amazing centerpiece. It also insures you have an abundant crop.
5. If you find bees have taken up residence in your walls, dog house, water main or BBQ, yes they will take up residence almost anywhere, call a beekeeper.
Thanks for reading and a Happy Swarm Season to you!
Humboldt Honey Wine
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