Thursday, May 5, 2011

A Future Social Worker?

Patrick is very afraid of bees.  Very. Afraid. Of. Bees. Three years ago he was stung on the ear. 

The story grows with time--first it was a "big bee," then a "mother bee," then the "queen of all bees," then the "queen mother of all hornet-bees."

It has now morphed into the fact that he was stung on the ear by the "queen mother of all killer bee-wasp-hornets"!

Anyhoo, Patrick came running into the house yesterday, because he was convinced there was another "queen mother of all killer bee-wasp-hornets"! 

I explained to him that bees are not aggressive in the spring; he was unlikely to get stung.

As with everything in life, Patrick wanted to know why?

"Well," I began, "at this time of year the bees are . . . (long pause) . . . they are just waking up . . . ummmm . . . because they are, well, they are . . . "

I paused, trying to think how to explain bee hibernation--and wondering if in fact bees even hibernate?

Patrick interrupted my obvious less-than-stellar knowledge on bee habits. 

"Oh, I get it Mom.  At this time of year, the bees are just trying to get their lives back together again."

Have I ever mentioned how much this kid makes me laugh?


Kerrie (and Jason) said...

Tell him that when the winter comes the bee's tend to sleep a lot because there isn't much food around. In spring they are much more active. Wearing not too bright colours (so you don't look like a flower) is a good way to reduce the chance of them landing on you. Also if one does land on you don't panic but just wait quietly and it will soon fly off again when it realises there is no nectar! Bee's won't sting unless they are stirred up - after all, they give their life if they sting so they won't do it lightly. (yes I work for a honey packing company in Australia!!)

thecurryseven said...

I just asked B., my resident bee keeper, if bees hibernate, but Kerrie beat me to the answer. I will add, though, that they all huddle together to keep warm in the winter.

It has been really interesting watching the bees fly in and out of the hive. They really aren't bothering us at all. I'm even comfortable letting the little girls stand over by it and watch. "Bee" is now on their list of words they can say.

Wasps/Yellow Jackets on the other hand are NOT nice and friendly flying insects.