Hunting Bees From Buckwheat





During buckwheat bloom, which occurs in the month of August and

early part of September, many bees are found. Some hunters line

them to the tree by sunning. This method requires a very clear day

and unless the hunter thoroughly understands this art, knows an

unloaded bee from a loaded one, he is not apt to be very

successful. Besides this fact I have known many hunters to so

injure their eyesight as to become, in old age, partially blind and

perhaps altogether so. I, myself, have found many bees in this way

and feel certain that my eyesight has been injured, but am very

thankful that I discarded this method many years ago.



Bees do their work on buckwheat from the time the dew is leaving

until near noon; and on a hot, clear day but few bees, if any, will

be found working on it after 12 M. One of the greatest elements of

success in hunting bees by the baiting method is to use a scent

that is the same as the flower the bee is working on. Therefore,

gather some of the flowers of the buckwheat and have them

distilled, or, if this is out of the question, put some of the

flowers in a quart jar, say half full, well packed down, then just

cover with diluted alcohol and let it stand a few days and you have

an ideal scent to use at this particular time. After getting a

course from a field of buckwheat, about ten or half-past ten go on

the course, and when you come to a place clear of underbrush and no

large trees to bother the flight of bees, sprinkle some of the

scent mentioned above on some leaves and near the scent place a

bunch of bushes sprinkled with bait made by filling a pint bottle

one-fourth full of honey, one-fourth of granulated sugar and

one-half water. Many bees, at this time of day, are going to and

fro from the field. Some of them find nectar harder to get than it

was an hour before and some fly on the homeward journey lightly

loaded. They are beginning to lose faith in the buckwheat field and

these are the very ones that detect the scent first. Others are

becoming dissatisfied as these first ones did--one rubs against

another, and in bee language tells that he has found something

mighty good down in the bushes, and by the time the bait is licked

up we should have a direct course from this location and be ready

to repeat the operation farther on the course. The next time the

bait is put down we should have plenty of bees in not more than ten

minutes, and if they are tardy about coming, providing we had a

fair amount at the first location, we have either passed the tree,

are nearly under it, or have gone far off the course.





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