We have bees in the attic (no, REALLY) and a man is coming on Monday to take the wall off of the side of the house (I am not making this up) and SUCK THEM OUT with some kind of beekeepers’ vacuum because we don’t want to kill them. This is apparently the busy time for bees to have a new queen and go off to form a new colony, and my attic looked like a great place to them, what with a storm on the way. We first saw them yesterday on the side of the house by the kitchen window–forming a “ball” or “bee ball” (I am still not making this up). Ever seen a bee ball clinging to your $350,000* stack of bricks? It’s sort of daunting, especially if you can’t really afford to live in your neighborhood anyway. It’s like some kind of omen or something.
* [My parents only paid $35,000 for the house in July 1967. That’s inflation for you. But we gave Mama $160K for it fifteen years ago. I don’t know what she did with the money. Probably bought doughnuts.]
The beekeeper says it’s lucky we saw them early, because some houses get ruined with bees in the walls and honey dripping down the pipes. He’s going to charge us (gulp) $750 to take them away. You would think he would pay us, as he’s getting a new hive for his farm! But anyhow, our tax refund came electronically today. I knew it wouldn’t last long. When I get a dollar, it means God knows something is about to cost me and He has sent the money for it. *sigh* Well, at least we have the money to get these bees out. Right?! *GRIN*
I really should use that in a novel sometime.
It’s lucky, as the man said, that we caught it this early. When we got home from our walk early yesterday afternoon, I glanced out the kitchen window over the sink and noticed some dots swirling around in the wind. Probably leaves and “shagnasties” off the live oak next door, I figured. We’re having such high winds that everything is blowing around, and the side yard there is sort of a wind tunnel (between our house and the rich neighbor’s house). (It’s the side with the birdbath that I posted a photo of last time.)
But then I noticed later that they were still swirling. In fact, they looked like insects. Yellow jackets or bees. Hmm. Weird? I didn’t want to get stung, and Mama needed help with her inhaler, so I didn’t think more about it.
Hubby walked in around 4:45. “Are those BEES?” He ran to the window over the sink.
“I guess,” I said absently, trying to decide whether to have strawberry gunk or chocolate gunk for dinner.
“No, really. What ARE those?”
He went around the side of the house to investigate. “It’s a swarm,” he reported. Indeed it did seem to be a rather thick tornado of bees. “They’re hanging around there near the eave of the house.”
“Is that bad?”
He disappeared to look on the Internet. Came hustling back to tell me that yes, it was. “They probably sense the storm coming and are looking for a place to stay.”
I called Richardson Animal Control, where they were about to leave for the day.
“Aren’t you the woman who had the owl in her living room last summer?” The guy chuckled. “House must be sitting on an Indian burial ground.”
“I wouldn’t doubt it,” I said dryly. He gave me phone numbers for three bee removal services.
The first one I called counseled patience. “They’re probably just stopping off, like at a motel for the night,” she said, sounding jaded. “Wait until tomorrow afternoon. If you still see them, then call me. We can come get them without hurting them. They’re endangered, you know.”
So . . . today hubby was home before us and on the phone with a different bee place. The guy said he couldn’t take us until Monday. The bees are going in where there’s a weep hole in the bricks, right under the cedar siding where the roof trim begins. “Don’t worry,” he told Hubby, “because they take five days to build a hive for the new queen and start making honey.”
I count five days between Thursday and Monday . . . inclusive.
Let’s hope that by the time they pull off the wall, the bees haven’t set up a Motel Six in there complete with nursery and honeycombs. (That costs more.)
And I was so looking forward to NOT having the wall ripped off the house and a huge bee vacuuming project going on this weekend. . . .