It is true what they say, the truth shows itself over a period of time. And so this is truly a fact in the evolution of the hive and the honey bee. Huge changes happened to the honey bee and the hive as “gift of the gods” became a by-product of industrialized farming. Rudolf Steiner in his Lectures on Bees spoke very clearly of the plight of the honey bee if people continued on the track they were on 100 years ago. He was right and it has all come to be.
Here at Bello Uccello Honey Bee Sanctuary we are Observing and Learning from the Hive and the bees and there is good news to share and may what we observe become a picture for the bees in our future.
I have noticed over the years some curious phenomena with our Bee hive Beings at our sanctuary and it seems that one of those mysteries has revealed itself to us so we may share it here with you.
For a time we thought it to be an “observer mistake”on our part, based particularly on the facts about bees written in the old industrial -factory- model manuals for beekeeping. Certain assumptions that have been made some time in the past and are now the go- to “scientific” explanations. When the hive is about to be reborn the first new queen to emerge kills all the other queen cells in the hive and also, if the old Mother Queen Bee has not left the hive by then, she will challenge the “mother bee” . The Old Queen usually leaves the hive to create a new hive elsewhere with a swarm of bees, with wax in their “pockets” to start creating the new hive upon arrival. The new Queen is the winner and the Survivor and her cycle begins. This is the natural science of understanding the hive and the honey bee.
Our story started maybe four years ago, when we witnessed the miracle of a swarm being born from one of our Hive Beings right in front of our eyes! As the bees took flight
to the sky with their old mother (or so I thought) they first congregated over the sanctuary, covering the sky and eventually slowly moving away towards a neighbours property, which is filled with high spruce trees and giant shrubbery. As we were so swept up in the moment to have the privilege to witness this rebirth of a Hive Being, I felt I had to follow them, on foot of course, as far as I could go. Following them would have given us a chance to either pick them up directly from the tree and bring them home to the Sanctuary or entice them to come and settle into one of the quickly provided empty hive boxes placed nearby.
As I stumbled through the under brush with considerable difficulty to keep up with the swarm above me, which was congregating on the tops of several spruce trees, one after another, I could observe them taking flight again and again. At some point I lost orientation of what the bees were actually trying to achieve up there. The brambles and the alders were blocking my path at this point and I was just about to make my mind up to watch them disappear in what- ever direction they wished to go, when they all took to the sky again and to my astonishment they were flying back towards the sanctuary.
I reversed my direction too and quickly made my way back towards the sanctuary. By the time I had all the Hive Beings in my line of sight I witnessed a great surprise. The swarm that had been meandering away from their own mother hive previously, was now in the process of landing and clustering on the front of their old hive. In orderly fashion I watched them walk back into their old abode.
In the bee world this was not “business as usual”. . .
After trying to read about this in bee books, without any luck, I made my own story up in trying to explain this phenomenon: “The old queen got eaten by an insect and the swarm returned home for if there is no queen there is no swarm anymore….. or it was a new young queen that went on her mating flight and the hive took the impulse to swarm but then, with the queen mated and her flying back, everybody else came home again too…
Needless to say I checked the hive being the next day for additional queen cells but could not find any, so the mystery did not get solved and no other swarm emitted from this Hive Being for the rest of that season.
Over the next two years , while working with the Bee Beings, I would , during a hive inspection, work through the supers and perhaps find a queen in the 3rd super. After I went through that super, I would lift it off to continue the inspection. There in the 2nd super was another Queen Bee. How curious.
Since our Queens are not marked my rational was, that while I was inspecting the last frames in the 3rd super the queen had walked down through to the next lower super just to greet me there again. This is absolutely possible and I did not give it much thought for a while . However I decided, after this had happened quite a few times, I would lift the laying queen temporarily out of the hive with the frame which she was on, along with all of the bees on that frame and put them into a prepared nucleus box. By doing this I could keep her separate from the rest of the Hive until the inspection could be finished; at which point I would lift her back into her home and close the hive up again.
And here comes the funny part of this story: With the queen waiting on her frame in the prepared nucleus box, as previously described, I was inspecting the rest of the hive and found another Queen, happily laying eggs and being attended too by her retinue .
I still felt that this must be one of those ” flukes of nature”, where a Mother Queen and a Daughter Queen live side- by -side in one Hive Being, since that is exactly what we are all told is not normal.
I have since found out, without a doubt, that Bello Uccello honey bee sanctuary definitely defies the one- queen- hive theory.
I have found 2 queens several times since then and one time in the middle of one of our courses we give annually, students themselves spotted two queens without them knowing about this phenomenon in our sanctuary, and this time we had the added luck that mother and daughter had two distinct body colours too. The students believed they also saw a third Queen and this will be our work in the future to observe and learn more about all of this phenomena.
To make this very clear at this point, this is not what is called a” 2 queen system” in the industry, where 2 queens are kept in hives separated by a queen excluder, for the sole reason to artificially increase the strength of a hive in numbers for the onset of the honey flow to then dispose of the older queen when the objective of more bees for honey production is achieved.
What we have working here is true Hive Being Intelligence that was allowed a more natural way for a change over from mother to daughter.
Obviously if the old mother is still laying and still has some of her pheromones, the bees allow her to do what she can do. And I have seen how the bees keep the mother and daughter apart from each other in a hive in different sections.
One time I checked one of my Hive Beings with 3 supers in mid June. I found the queen in the upper super and was somewhat dismayed by the small brood she maintained in the first super. There were maybe 2 frames of brood over the whole super,– not enough for a hive being in June, but no signs of disease. I lifted her off with the whole box and inspected the 2nd super only to find this box mainly filled with pollen and honey. I was already scratching my head to see the bees organizing their food stores below them. Not expecting much in the last box , I lifted off the 2nd. box to find the first box totally full with brood from wall to wall and with another queen laying fast and in the most beautiful pattern.
This time not only did I see 2 queens again, but I could actually identify who was the mother and who was the daughter.
The wisdom I was allowed to witness was heart warming. The bees had organized their brood nest in such an obvious way, to allow the mother queen to live out her life in the upper chamber whilst putting honey between the two.
Can you see how this puts a very different light to the first story I related to you of the swarm?
We share this story because we feel there is so much to be learned from bees. In our case they are allowed to live as close as possible to being a feral hive . When a species is under threat of survival and this is definitely the case with the “industrialized bee”, survival behaviour kicks in. In the case of the honey bee, the emerging new queen will kill all others in the hive so only one exists and the mother is usually disposed off.
When the “natural hive” sit’s in a place of “Peace and Plenty”, the Hive Being remembers it’s true blue print of life and this killing of the mother and perhaps even a “sister” stop’s. In the LAND OF MILK AND HONEY the distortion of “survival instinct” changes to one of harmony.
The bees are Love, their frequency is Love. If in 120 years the environment so bent the behaviour of the bees, what does it say about Human Beings who have spent thousands of years in environments of distortion?
Man created the poisonous environment for the honey bee and the hive and their “survival” has come down to colony collapse and disease and distortion. Are the bees showing us that there is something in front of us demanding us to Choose something else, to create a small world of goodness with our Wills and Love? We helped to
create a “normal” world for the bees and the hive – do we all need to give that attention and intention to creating a “normal” world for each other?
When human beings are free from fear and survival instincts; and claim our own Being of Love, will we also stop killing as an option for survival?
With the New Earth, will we show co-creative nature within us, just as the bees have done, that redefines “the facts of science”?
Life Forces are where life is and it is very easily felt at the sanctuary. It is also felt in communities of health and happiness.+++