Later the same week, another swarm showed up on the same tree in Forestville. This time I brought my veil. When I climbed up on the ladder to shake the hive into my box, half the swarm landed on my shirt. And under it. I could feel the lovely heat of the mass against my skin and the tickle of clinging feet. I lift the edge of my shirt to provide a bridge to the entrance of the box. They strolled in, lining up at the entrance fanning their enthusiasm and (I hope) appreciation of the new home.
Then, as it seems to be true that the chickens do get tired of laying so productively after two years, we had to buy some new baby replacements:
Their heated brood box is just outside our bedroom so we can hear them cheeping all day and night. Flowers and life are blooming.
Dalziel (our cat) and Joey (husband) keep watch too.