Friday, September 21, 2018

SWARMED!!!!!


As feared, my neighbor's honey bees have discovered my feeders.  Neither I nor my hummingbirds are pleased.



The bee guards only slowed the bees down but didn't stop them.  They covered the spouts, the hummingbirds poked the invaders but they didn't move. They swarmed me when I walked out on the deck because it seems I smelled sweet.  These pictures were made by sticking my camera through a slightly raised kitchen window.  



The bees stayed on the feeders until they drank it dry then crawled inside to get the last bit of sugar off the wall (This is the feeder without bee guards).  Feeding my neighbor's ravenous bees is not something I am willing to do.


 If anyone knows what I can do, I need advice.


UPDATE:  PROBLEM SOLVED
I took the advice of Christel, who commented and suggested searching the internet for a solution. Bees and wasps swarming feeders appears to be a common problem; however, I learned if you spray the feeder with cooking oil (I used olive oil) it makes it too slippery for the bees to land.  They slip and slide then fall off.  It is hilarious to watch!  We have been standing at the kitchen window laughing all afternoon.  This one landed on the top where there was no oil and walked around and around in circles trying to find the spout.  He wisely avoided the oily areas.


As for the hummingbirds, they too had trouble with the oil.  They were also slipping and sliding as they tried to drink.


We laughed at them too.  


After a while, they discovered if they leaned forward as they drank they could balance and not slip off.


As soon as the bees left, the hummingbirds all returned.  They were hungry and didn't mind the laughter coming through the kitchen window.  

Oh, if anyone is concerned.  No hummingbird was harmed in the filming of this post.  They are BIRDS and don't fall down.  They fly!

,
Additional Links About My Hummingbirds

Feathered Neighbors, 2018

"Ping Pong the Great" returned leading the flock.
Today's Blooms, April 15, 2018

Feathered Neighbors, 2017, "Ping Pong the Great"

Shared with non-feathered friends from around the world on
Wild Bird Wednesday

14 comments:

  1. This is a problem, I do not know about as there are no hummingbirds in our region of the world.
    But I have seen, that on the internet there are so many advices and videos how to keep bees off
    hummingbird feeders. I hope they will help you.
    Christel

    ReplyDelete
  2. The Oracle (internet) has all of the answers! Why didn't I think of asking it? I am typing my question in now.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yikes! That's terrible to have all those bees on the feeders. I'm glad you found a solution. I notice that there are a ton of bees sipping nectar from the hardy fuschia bush where the hummingbirds usually are, but I don't see them now. Maybe the bees scared them away! Who knows?

    And, think, you have the most frugal accomplishment for the week--free entertainment watching the bees and birds slide off the feeders! How are you going to top that? I can't wait to find out:). Have a great week!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Love the hummingbirds. My grandpa had 3 strokes when I was younger and each one took about a year to come back from. Grandma put hummingbird feeders outside the kitchen window and he would sit at the table and watch them for hours. He named them and could tell them apart after a while. They would fly up to the window like they were greeting him when ever he sat down.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for this comment. I have wondered if they are learning me but wasn't sure. They will buzz the kitchen window if they see me to let me know the feeders are empty. Also, they don't seem to be bothered when I sit on the deck. If I move suddenly, they will fly away. I don't like them flying over my open coffee cup, they might drop a present. The only one we have named is "Ping Pong the Great" because he is unforgettable. He returned this weekend. Bill noticed him sitting on his throne and called me over. We all agreed it was him.

      Delete
  5. Humming birds are my favorite and I can watch them for hours. I'm glad you found a solution and I'll have to remember this one. Those bees can be a royal pain. I'd have laughed at them too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I brought the feeders in to fill them and they were so greasy I couldn't hold them in my hands. Dustin saw one lone bee return to the feeders and he rushed out to spray them again. I think he was having fun.

      Delete
  6. Great photos! I have had some trouble with bees on my feeders, but not that many! Glad you found a solution that did not harm the bees. Maybe your neighbor will share the honey!
    We got 6 inches of rain overnight here in northeast Mississippi. The weather map looks like you are getting it too. Stay safe!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I doubt he will share the honey but he may be confused when he sees the slipping and sliding like a drunkard.

      We are getting the rain right now and we need it. It hadn't rained in weeks, I was tired of watering and now we are getting it all at once. I checked the weather report and it said we have a 100% chance of rain today. For once, the weatherman is right.

      Delete
  7. Yikes! I get hairs standing up on my neck just seeing all those bees!

    I just sprayed my bird feeder pole with WD 40 to try to deter the squirrels from climbing it... pretty funny to watch them slide to the bottom if they can even get only half way up it... and, just slide or slip off if they try a flying leap from the patio wall onto the top of it. It almost works better if it is just really wet from rain.. ..but the spray works well too...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was not brave. I was standing in the kitchen with the window lifted a few inches so I could point the camera lens out. If the glass had been clean, I could have shot through the window; however, I prefer watching birds, not washing windows.

      Delete
  8. Interesting post. We do not get humming birds here sadly so we do not have the problem. I am allergic to bees though, so I just might need the oil idea for something else! Have a grat weekend Diane

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm surprised that we still have hummingbirds at our feeder. It sounds like your solution worked pretty well, but if you'd like another idea, several years ago I purchased these bee-free feeders, made by a zookeeper in charge of hummingbirds. I'm not in any way affiliated, just wanted to share that they have worked great for me. https://www.etsy.com/listing/62317220/bee-proof-drip-free-copper-hummingbird?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=copper%20hummingbird%20feeders&ref=sr_gallery-1-1&organic_search_click=1

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I took your suggestion and went to their site. The feeders look like they might work - a bee could not possibly get in through the little hole. I might get a few next year. Sadly, mine have migrated on and left us. We have only two or three stragglers left yet with three feeders still up, they manage to continue to fight. All three want whichever feeder the other one has chosen.

      Delete