Thursday, January 31, 2013


Two weeks ago, we noticed usual activity surrounding the bees. When we went to investigate, we saw our hive was under attack by robber bees. Eric reduced the entrance to the hive. I covered the hive in a sheet.

But our measures we no match for the robber bees. Within a day, our six box high hive was an empty shell of the thriving bee metropolis it once was.

Eric pulled what honey he could from the hive. I cannot express the deep sadness and loss I feel. I went out the very same day on a quest to pick up a swarm. A friend said she had spotted one. When I arrived to the canyon, the bees were not there. I now have a mobile swarm capture box with veil, spray bottle for sugar water and assorted tools to help with the acquisition in the back of my car. We are on the cusp of swarm season. I hope to pick up two swarms to start two new hives at Camp Ramshackle. If you see any swarm in the LA area, in particular Northeast LA or Pasadena, please post a comment to let me know. I'm on the hunt.


  1. That's so sad! :( I hope you find a new swarm soon.

  2. Thanks, Mel. We hope to be back in bees soon.

  3. Darnit. How do you keep this from happening again?

  4. Good question. I think a bit more hive inspection might be helpful. We found a bit of mold on some of the lower honeycomb when we disassembled this one. Usually, the bees take care of everything. But perhaps a little help removing those parts might be helpful in the future. This hive was about four years old. We hope for another strong hive. We also plan to have two hives to insure us against both hives either absconding or being robbed in the future. Kirk Anderson the leader of the Backwards Beekeepers is a firm believer that the stronger hives will survive. If you have a setback like this, find another hive until you get a strong hive that can withstand the elements.

    As odd as this may sound, I'm looking forward to building up our next generation of hives. Had these bees not been robbed, I would have happily carried on without finding another hive. Now, I'm looking forward to the acquisition and build up. A good learning experience.


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