I'm usually a Live & Let Live sort of person. Patience is a virtue that I try to embrace. I don't mind people going about their business as long as it doesn't interfere with me going about mine. However, it seems that I do get a little defensive when it comes to honeybees. Me & the bees are like this: (picture me twisting my "Pointer" and Middle Finger together). We're tight. Just the honeybees though, I'm really not into wasps, yellow jackets, hornets and Maybees (the fat black ones that buzz around - "Maybe" they'll sting you & "Maybe" they won't.)
But I will go to great lengths to rescue a drowning honey bee, or pick one up & just let it walk around my hand. They're beautiful if you take the time to look at them up close, instead of running & screaming, or crushing them with your flip flop.
They are very intelligent. I've pulled many out the swimming pool & let them dry themselves off on my hand, watching them. They usually preen the water off themselves, flutter their wings dry and when their ready they'll fly away & go about their business.
My obsession with the little creatures is such that my goal for the year is to get some of my own. I was on the Internet the other night browsing around for more bee suppliers, catalogs, etc. when I came across a website, written by vegans to discourage others from eating honey. They claim (it makes me po'd just remembering it) that beekeepers are nothing better than slave drivers. We hold the bees captive and force them to work. If they swarm we try to catch them & stuff them back in the hive. We truck them around, not caring at all for their well being (or "Bee-ing", ha ha, bad pun, lets move on) and not only that but was the public aware that honey is made from BEE SPIT?!! Needless to say I was FUMING by the time I got to the end of their article.
I'm surmising from their At One With Nature attitude that vegans only eat acorns and grass. Everything else needs bees to make it grow. Vegetables. What pollinates vegetables? Bees. Fruits. How does fruit grow? On a tree of course, which blossoms in the spring and is pollinated again by, class? Yes, bees.
Now let's talk about the part about honey being made by Bee Spit. This is a true fact more or less. Just like eggs come out of a chicken's butt and milk comes out of a cow's udder, and most vegetables are grown in poop. To be more scientific, here is how honey is made:
Sucrose is a 12-carbon sugar molecule and also the most predominant sugar found in nectar. A Bee collects nectar. On the way back to the hive, it adds an enzyme called invertase to the nectar. This changes the 12-carbon sugar molecule to two six-carbon sugars: glucose & fructose.
When Miss Worker Bee gets back to the hive, she hands off the nectar to Miss Receiving Bee (they are all females, it's true, look it up) who adds more invertase then finds a nice little empty honey cell she can store it in & tend it.
Evaporation occurs reducing the water percentage in the nectar from 80% to 18-19%. In addition, due to the enzymes the bees so thoughtfully added, the sugar content rises from 20% to just over 80%. And that my friend is how honey is made.
Now for the part about trying to prevent swarming & stuffing bees back in the hive. I'm am totally offended by this. This is almost as offensive as cell phones, ha ha.
Bees swarm when the hive gets too croweded. Half will fly off looking for accomodations that will fit them. The other half stays put & keeps on keeping on.
A beekeeper doesn't catch a swarm of bees and jam them back into the box they came out of. That's preposterous! But whatever. The Vegans can think whatever they like. As for what I think, I think they're all idiots.
Maybe that's what I should've named my blog. "They're All Idiots".