Katherine Hayton | Where are all the bees?
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19 Oct / Where are all the bees?

The rosemary bush by the front gate opposite our letterbox is in full-on blossom at the moment. It’s glorious and fragrant for something that’s basically a bit of spiky wood the rest of the year.

But there’s something that’s been missing this year. I don’t know why but usually the little blue flowers are like catnip for bees. They flock to it; buzzing around all day long. They fly from one flower to another with drunken swoops.

Except for this year. Nowhere to be seen.

Out the other end of our property I have the black- and red-currant bushes merrily plumping out their fruits. There are some tiny and amusing wax-eyes that keep landing and dipping their beaks in. You can tell from their shocked expression that they know they shouldn’t.

Occasionally we even get a bumble bee bumbling by. But not a honey-bee in sight.

I realise that there have been a variety of ever-more-destructive diseases blighting our poor little honey-bunnies for a number of years, but they’ve still remained plentiful around our place. Mostly by virtue of not living very far away at all from a couple of extremely large berry farms.

This year it seems it’s even started to effect us. And by us I mean me because my darling doesn’t believe in fruit. At least not as a food-stuff. Not even when it’s cunningly disguised as a cake. Even a chocolate cake.

Farewell my little friends. I will keep my fingers crossed that you recover from your Varroa mites or your colony collapses and come back strong and healthy next year.

By Katherine Hayton in Katherine Hayton's Blog

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