Hi bee friends, I'm seeking some advice because I've decided my bees are jerks. As I'm typing this my wife is nursing yet another sting on her face and a bee is trying to come in through the screen window and get her again, at least 50 - 60 feet away from the hive. Jerk.
I will give more details below but to be brief, I "inherited" a hive when I bought my house in January in Southern California from the previous owners. We love our bees and have tried to give them the best care. But they are jerks.
My neighbors have come over angry that they have stung them and even their small children.
We probably get stung once or twice a week while working in the yard. At first it was like, oh it's the day after an inspection, or I was in their flight path and they got stuck in my hair, or oh, we just mowed so they are agitated. But yesterday my wife was just sitting outside, about 50 feet from the hive, out of it's line of sight, and one just head butted her. So she calmly got up after it left to walk away and it came back and stung her. Happened again today. She stays very calm, doesn't swat, but they sting her anyway. Same with my mom when she was in town, despite being away from the hive.
I used to sit by the hive and watch them come and go, and I didn't wear gloves my first couple of inspections and none of them bothered me. Now we sort of have to stay inside for extended periods of time when they start coming after us.
Seeking some advice from anyone willing to give it.
- My first inspection revealed that the top super was completely empty and there was a queen excluder. The top super is a deep and the bottom is a medium - didn't set it up this way, just how I inherited it.
- Someone from our local beekeeping association came over to help me do an inspection. Didn't notice any problems, but we didn't see any eggs (but we didn't spend much time looking), and we did notice lots of drones.
- It has certainly been a lot warmer here, which may have them agitated.
- I have a source of water, a small dish with gravel, for them but they don't seem to use it, ordering a chicken waterer today
I can attach photos as well if anyone would find them helpful.