Sting Stinger

7 May

Last year, I didn’t get stung until the 4 or 5 time we opened the hive. I was completely cool with opening the hive without a veil on or even gloves. I’d even open the hive without any shoes on.  So far I’ve been stung 3 times and I haven’t even had the hive for 3 weeks.To be fair, the first time I was stung was back in March by a hive that wasn’t mine.

I was thinking about purchasing a full hive that the seller couldn’t take care of this year. I went with him to see how healthy the hive was. This hive was a few years old and has survived the winter. The owner cracked open the lid and within minutes a bee flew out straight to my forehead and stung me. I played it cool, not trying to bring more attention to my rapidly swelling brow. The hive was very impressive but in the end I decided not to buy the hive. The seller wanted $550. Although I was tempted by the idea of a healthy hive that required no work or start-up anxiety, I knew that I wanted to get a fresh start this year.

I realized that the bees have been going through the sugar syrup in less than 24 hours. Last Wednesday I went to feed the girls and decided that I should just check out what was happening in the hive. I had the veil and gloves on and still managed to get stung in the finger. I didn’t even get to see what was happening in the hive because once a bee stings it gives off a smell that alerts the other bees.

Luckily I was able to get the ring I wear on that finger off before my knuckle swelled up. And did it swell.

Swollen knuckles

Swollen knuckles

I took some fast acting Benadryl and fell asleep early. I’m not sure it had any effect because by Thursday by entire hand was swollen. It also might be expired.

So I went out on Thursday just feed the bees again. It has been so gloomy and rainy and cold and I am afraid that the girls are going to starve. I had just come home from work and still in my work clothes and jacket. The plan was to lift the lid and pour in the syrup and close the lid. I was very skittish and they must have known because they were in my face from the start. I filled the first side of the feeder and then had to walk away. I realized that there was a bee crawling on my stomach. How it got there, I am not sure. I was able to get it off before I got stung. I went back to the hive and filled the other side with sugar and closed the lid. As I am walking inside I felt a bee on my calf. This time I did panic and was stung near my knee. It swelled up too but was much less annoying than being stung in the hand since I don’t normally type with my calves.

I’m really angry about this. I haven’t been able to do a proper inspection because of the terrible weather. I have no idea what is really going on in there except for the fact that they are hungry and eating through my 5lb bag of sugar. Hopefully they know what they are doing.

2 Responses to “Sting Stinger”

  1. Emily Heath May 7, 2012 at 4:59 pm #

    Oof they are obviously not enjoying the bad weather. It’s the same here in London – over a month of clouds and rain, feels like winter. All we can do is feed and hope they’re ok. Sucks!

    • brooklynlovebug May 7, 2012 at 10:57 pm #

      what a great way of putting — they are just as grumpy about the weather as I am!

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