Photography And Half-Thoughts By Mitchell Hegman

...because some of it is pretty and some of it is not.

Monday, April 11, 2016

A Spa for Honeybees

You know how you don’t appreciate the smell of garlic on the breath of someone you are talking with?  Seems honeybees are the same way.  Garlic is a complete turnoff.  You can use various forms of garlic—powders or homemade sprays—as a harmless repellent.
I learned this as a result of an unusual problem.  Yesterday, a mini-swarm of honeybees decided to collect in a small space under my hot tub cover.  When I reached under the cover to cycle the jets before half-opening cover, several honeybees tumbled out and began to electron around my face, alerting me to their presence.  With the help of that girl, I flopped open the cover and found a half-dozen more bees.
I am guessing that the little cubby there is a pretty comfy spa for the bees.    
The bees continued to zing around a perform touch-and-goes on the edge of the hot tub after we removed the cover.  “That’s not good,” I told that girl.  “I don’t think they want to leave.  I think I will Google natural repellents and see if we can push them to another place.”
Garlic and cinnamon appeared on several of the first few sites my search netted.  Seems the smell of garlic is disgusting to bees.  Various methods of garlic application were suggested.  I opted for my own version.  I wiped the hot tub surfaces bees found interesting with a paper towel soaked in the juice from a jar of crushed garlic we had in the refrigerator.
One by one, the bees performed another series of touch-and-goes.  Gradually, though, they decreased in number.  Within an hour or so, the bees were gone.
Garlic: not just a vampire repellent. 

--Mitchell Hegman