The Sound of a Queen Bee

800px-Bienenkoenigin3

Image: Wikipedia.

I have  a friend who wanted bees so when I got a call late in the afternoon on Sunday that there was a swarm in a tree nearby I threw my equipment in the car and headed over.

The swarm was about twelve feet up in a pineapple guava tree. I trimmed a few branches, stuck a nuc box (a kind of temporary hive box made out of cardboard) under the swarm and bumped on the branch.

I knew I had the queen when I noticed a group of workers fanning their wings on the outside of the nuc box. Fanning creates a cloud of scent that lets the other workers know where the hive is located. The other reasons I knew the queen was in the box was more interesting.

When I set the nuc box down on a wooden deck I heard a sound I’ve never heard before: what I think was the sound of a queen bee “piping.” The sound is the queen announcing herself to any potential rivals–sometimes there is more than one queen in a swarm–the other queen, if there is one, will respond in kind and fight it out to the death.

It’s hard to describe how awe inspiring it is to be in the midst of a swarm. To hear the queen made this rescue effort an experience I’ll never forget.

Saturday Linkages: Rocket Stoves, Big Cargo Bikes and Shopping for the Apocalypse

Image: BoingBoing.

Image: BoingBoing.

The Flying Tortoise: A Very Gorgeous Little Rocket Mass Type Terracotta… http://theflyingtortoise.blogspot.com/2014/05/a-very-gorgeous-little-rocket-mass-type.html?spref=tw …

How to mount staghorn ferns in your garden http://bit.ly/1nosn5W  #diy

Getting to the root of gardening’s role in mental wellness | Victory Gardens Blog | http://buff.ly/1o3lIkd 

Darrel Morrison’s Addition to the Brooklyn Botanic… http://landscapeofmeaning.blogspot.com/2014/04/darrel-morrisons-addition-to-brooklyn.html?spref=tw …

Giethoorn: This small town in the Netherlands has no roads but instead, miles of canals and over 100 bridges http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/giethoorn …

BBC News – The slow death of purposeless walking http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-27186709 …

World’s largest cargo bike: http://www.nicojungel.net/space.html 

What is a Broody Coop? http://hencam.com/thevintagehen/2014/05/broody-coop-2/ …

The revenge of the lawn http://boingboing.net/2014/05/07/the-revenge-of-the-lawn.html …

How to shop for the apocalypse » The Spectator http://specc.ie/1o6VDhe 

Can I master fencing, the sport for vicious brainiacs? http://www.slate.com/articles/life/human_guinea_pig/2009/06/chess_with_knives.html …

Space-age refrigeration, 1968 via @BoingBoing http://boingboing.net/2014/05/08/space-age-refrigeration-

Climate: Rising C02 levels to hit grain nutrition http://www.seeddaily.com/reports/Climate_Rising_C02_levels_to_hit_grain_nutrition_999.html …

It came from the faucet http://boingboing.net/2014/05/07/brain-eating-amoebas-in-my-wa.html …

For these links and more, follow Root Simple on Twitter:

How to Lock a Bike

The interwebs have produced an unlikely phenomenon, a bike locking celebrity. Meet Hal Ruzal of Bicycle Habitat in Manhattan. Hal, as usual, has some great bike locking advice, meets up with international fans and critiques the bike locking style of fashion blogger George Hahn, the most dapper man on a bike I’ve ever seen.

Keep those bikes well locked!