24 July 2010

The Beekeeper

It's been a few weeks since I took this photo of a local farmer moving white painted wooden bee skeps in the back of his tractor-pulled wagon. Just through the trees lies his destination, a shaded spot suitable for this collection of white boxes which will be stacked and will house his bees. They are placed in a U-shaped area, a dozen structures as tall as a man, arranged in a semicircle beneath the shade of the spreading limbs. Beyond the trees are huge fields, perhaps several hundred acres of pasture and crops, which the bees call their own.

I've written about concern for the pollinators before. Though we have flowers and clover, and the neighbors have apple and cherry trees, I have not seen honey bees again this year. Perhaps they have chosen the life of domesticity. I don't know. But, thanks to the bee keepers the honey supply in our area is plentiful and the bees are productive.