Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Bee Hero

I opened the slider to the patio to find Greta sitting at her sand and water table in a cloud of bees. She was completely calm, staring down into the water, unconcerned about the bee near her hand, or the bees buzzing all around.

I thought I'm going to have to do something about those bees.

Bees need a source of water but they don't like it to be too close to the hive. Our sand and water table must be the perfect distance because they have shunned the birdbath out front and other offerings and made the sand and water table their water bar of choice. (Experienced beekeepers, suggestions please!)

Here Greta's saying, "This bee crawled on my arm and it didn't even sting me!"

Then she gave a gasp. And picked up a stick. She reached down into the water and came up with a bedraggled bee on the stick.

She walked it over to the mini-trampoline and set the stick down.Look, Mama! she said, I'm a bee hero!
And there I saw four bees drying in the sun.

We try to leave a towel hanging into one of the buckets so the bees can land on the towel and drink. But many fall in anyway. Lucky for them the bee hero sits poised, ready to help.
This bee fell off the bee hero's stick onto the rim of the tubs. I loved watching her dry herself. In the right center photo she is wet and bedraggled. Look how she preens until she is fluffy all over. Then she bowed low to the bee hero (center top) and flew off to cool her hive with the water.

Click to enlarge.


Kat said...

It's nice to have a hero in the family. :) Looks like she has saved many lives. Love that macro on the pink towel..so cool that you can see its 'eyelashes'.

Kristin Sherman Olnes said...

What a great post! I love the photo montage of the bee drying off with the yellow and green backdrop. Great shots! I also enjoyed how the title was explained by your daughter's comment. She is a zen bee queen.

J.G. Wilder said...

One of my top parenting priorities has been to teach my kids not to be afraid of bugs -- my mother did a good job of teaching me to have a mortal terror of anything with a six legs (or eight) when I was a kid. You are the master. Greta the bee hero can grow up to be anything she wants to be, even an entomologist! Beautiful photos, too.

Stefaneener said...

Superhero Greta! Make that child a cape, because every bee hero needs to dress the part. Wonderful shots. Maybe you could move the sand and water table and put the birdbath there?

gina said...

I don't know what is more amazing- this story or your photos. :)

Susan said...

Kat, thanks! I am a little more timid around the bees than my little bee hero, but I do like to get very close with my macro lens.

Kristin--thank you! I enjoyed watching her so much. It was amazing how she contorted herself. At one point she lay down and was using all her legs to preen herself. She looked like a dog scratching fleas.

Jennifer, I have also tried to keep my kids from fear of things that squirm. I succeeded beyond my expectations, by which I mean that they pick up things that I am not sure I want them to pick up (I hope to post about this soon).

Recently at the botanical garden some young guys fearfully pointed out a (teeny baby) snake to the kids and they ran and picked it up.

The guys were sputtering that they shouldn't do that. Clem said, "But its just a harmless little garter snake." To which one of the guys said, "Whatever!" Being bitten or stung by things they pick up doesn't deter them, either.

Stefaneener, hey, good idea. I'll try a variant on that (the birdbath got smashed). Yesterday Greta spent a lot of time rescuing bees in the buff. A cape would have been a very cute addition.

Susan said...

Gina, thanks! I've been really vexed with my macro lens. Mad at myself, really, because I thought I must have let it get scratched. The pictures just weren't coming out crisp and clear. But I guess it was just photographer error, because it worked great for these shots.

patricia said...

What a great story. I love that Greta is so calm around the bees.

Your bee montage is amazing. I'm lusting after a camera with a macro lens. I spent about fifteen minutes the other day trying to get a good photo of a bee on rosemary. I finally got a few that satisfied me, but they definitely don't have the definition yours do. Love that bee fuzz!

JeaneP said...

Love the calm Bee Hero Photos of hero and bees. Greta's a real sweetheart.

Mister Dad said...

Seriously...... she gets it.

she can befriend my kiddos any time she likes.

Greta's a real gift! Inspiring...