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Thread: Drinks on me!

  1. #1

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    The wife and I were sitting on the deck beside our water garden pond late this afternoon. We noticed a bee that would take a drink on a rock by the waterfall. Then take off in the direction of the bee orchard a couple hundred yards away. Then come back to the exact same spot, have another gulp or two....then off again. The wife got a kick out of watching this take place several times. For me....it doens't take much to amaze me anyway.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    3,401

    Post

    You only saw the one bee?
    Not a bunch of them?

    Bees tend to be amazingly "loyal" about a
    consistent water supply, which is why it is
    so hard to get them to stop gathering water
    from a neighbor's pool, dog dish, or dripping
    hose spigot.

    You should see bees visiting this spot on
    a daily basis, as hives need water on even
    a cool day.

  3. #3

    Post

    Just the one. We have a couple 2-4 acres lakes all around us and a 1/4 mile from the Platte River so we have no shortage of water around us. Already had some neighbor's get their underwear all bunch up about having bees. There be should have been warning signs, what if some kids kick a ball back there, etc. (No kids are ever back there anyway) Got it straigthened out though. They have a new campaign to focus on now anyway. The one bee was fun to watch. The wife even named it (go figure) It was about 10 minute round trips for it. Noticed no significant drops in the water level. [img]smile.gif[/img]

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,492

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    mdgator, where are you located? I've been living in the Platte River valley for most of the last 34 years. I'm about 10 miles from the Platte now as the crow flys. 12 as the car drives. [img]smile.gif[/img]

    The bee that you saw leave will return to precisely the same spot. It's an interesting thing about water foragers. Sprinkle a little powdered sugar or flour on that bee and you'll be able to recognize it when it comes back.

    Since you have the timing you can calculate the distance.

    "x = 150y - 500 (straight line in Figure 1). That is, to estimate distance (x = meters or yards) to each colony, we multiply complete round trip time (y = time between arrivals) by 150 and subtract 500 from the result. (The constant value of 500 represents the time spent filling at the station and unloading in the colony - see Wenner 1963)."

    http://www.beesource.com/pov/wenner/bsjun1992.htm

    That would make it about x meters=(150 x 10min) - 500 which is 1000 meters which is 1100 yard which is 3/4 miles away.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Chandler, Tx
    Posts
    282

    Post

    I have found that bees love running water. They will take a waterfall or a dripping hose bibb any day over a pan of water. Even if the pan is closer.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Worthington, Pennsylvania USA
    Posts
    1,848

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    Yes bees do prefer running water. My wife put a small waterfountain on the back porch a couple years ago and the bees just loved it. It was interesting to watch the bees land on their own "bee pad" and get a drink to take to hive--over and over and over. The fountain only held about a gallon of water with a recycling pump.
    "Younz" have a great day, I will.

  7. #7

    Post

    The same one (maybe)came back today several times.

    Mike, Great idea on the powder sugar. You have always demonstrated your extensive knowledge of beekeeping.

  8. #8

    Post

    Back again today. The interesting thing is that it doesn't show up until late afternoon. Maybe due to the direction of the sun or that the pond is now in the shade. The intervals were from 2-4 minutes. First showed up about 4:15 pm and quit just before dark. Will have to try the powdered sugar thing. More later.....maybe. Like I said beofre, it doens't take much to fasinate me.

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