Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Bee pet? Not your best bet!

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Over the weekend our ward had a party at a nearby state park. In our ward we have an entomologist, who also happens to enjoy children, and subsequently brings assorted creepy crawlies to ward events to educate and entertain the kids. He brought a beehive this time, housing 6,000 bees, give or take a few. This made several of the mothers nervous, but the fearless kids were delighted. They got to try on bee keeper hats and see how the smoke is used to make the bees docile, and then caught them in nets.

The best part was getting to eat the honey. Some even ate bee larva. Ewww!
Maddy became enamored with a bee she caught and asked if she could keep it. So, both girls came home with pet bees. This isn't as dangerous as it sounds, since they were both males and had no stingers. They lovingly served them drops of honey and made soft beds for them out of lamb's ear. Unfortunately, Maddy's bee, "BB" was lost as he was carried outside, and Emily's bee, "Bumble", passed away yesterday. It was heartbreaking to them both, but not unexpected, as they had been told they would not survive more than a couple days away from the colony.

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Sadly, some %70 of the honeybee populations around the world have suffered tragic losses recently. I guess a mite that the bees get carries a virus that is causing the problem. But, a couple weeks ago the military was able to isolate the virus. Hopefully, they will now be able to find a treatment. It's not just honey that we'll miss otherwise. The bees are relied on to pollinate a huge percentage of the fruits and vegetables we eat, as well.

PS. Cyrus had his 2 month check up yesterday. He is now 15 lbs 1 oz, or just half a pound shy of having doubled his birth weight!

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14 comments:

  1. Cyrus is so beautiful. I hadn't heard about the military isolating the virus that was affecting the bee population...hooray! How funny the girls had pet bees.

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  2. I heard about the bee problem but not that they had found a solution. Glad they did!

    Baby is getting so big and cute!

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  3. I would be scared to bring bees home, even without stingers. You are such a fun mom! Cyrus is so cute! :)

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  4. They grow soo fast.

    One time we went to some kind of activity where we could bring pets. My brother caught a fly and somehow put some thread through it, without killing it. Then he attached the string to his shirt. So he had this dumb fly attached to him, flying around all day. He thought he was a genius.

    Now that I think about it, wouldn't that be kind of annoying having a fly buzzing around you all day?

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  5. Oh my gosh - this picture of Cyrus is awesome - all of your children ... they are SO beautiful!!!

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  6. what a cool adventure with bees-- cyrus looks darling!

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  7. Wow insect ward parties...I think I'm glad I'm not in your ward, no offence intended I swear! Let's just say I'm not really insectphobic, but I'd rather not sit down to a picnic with them.

    Oh that picture of Cyrus is beautiful!

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  8. I had no idea they had figured out how to isolate that African mite that was killing the bees. Wow!

    Your kids are brave. Just this morning Tess saw a tiny spider outside and came in bawling because this microscopic thing was going to carry her away.

    Cyrus is getting SOOOO big! He is beautiful!

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  9. Beautiful baby!!!

    Funny about the bees. I think that's the last thing I'd want to bring to a picnic- but sounds like the kids enjoyed it!

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  10. I love your pictures Nettie!

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  11. I had no idea male bees didn't have stingers. I would think that would be a hard pet to have...where did you keep them? Cyrus is adorable. And that is such a great picture! Sending him some cyber kisses XXXX from his favorite aunt....okay, I know I have never met him in person, but I am sure I will be his favorite when I get to meet him. :)

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  12. Cyrus is beautiful!!
    I don't like bees. They scare me!! You are too cool!

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  13. seriously...what kind of camera do you have? Your pics are so nice! I've beeen stung by bees at least half a dozen times, but then I've had cactus in me at least as often and neither one really scares me.
    They can be pretty unpleasant though!

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  14. Interesting about the bees! And Cyrus is BEAUTIFUL.

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