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PC: Bee Downtown

Bee Aware: Spring May Bring Honeybee Colonies to Piedmont Park

If you’ve visited Piedmont Park recently, you may have noticed something unusual in the trees near the Invesco Beehives in the Piedmont Commons. You may also wonder if it was left there on accident.

Photo Credit: Bee Downtown

These biodegradable landscaping pots were hung in the trees on purpose by our friends at Bee Downtown. The pots are called “swarm traps” and are used for best beekeeping practices from the months of March through July. Honeybee colonies grow quickly, and when they outgrow their hive, spread through a process called swarming.

PC: Bee Downtown

Photo Credit: Bee Downtown

When a colony swarms, 60% of the bees leave the hive to search for a new one. The group takes flight, clusters up and latches on to whatever they can find while scout bees look for a new home. This is where the swarm traps are put to use. They provide a home for the colony and allow Bee Downtown to safely relocate the bees to a more permanent home.

While alarming at first, honeybee swarms are harmless. The bees have no home so they have nothing to defend and their bellies are so full of honey that they can’t bend over to sting!

Photo Credit: Bee Downtown

If you see a swarm anywhere, whether it’s on a tree or in a box, please call or text the Lead BDT Beekeeper, Nick Weaver, at 678-779-8143 or Pam Allen at 770-310-1673. 

If you have any bee-related questions or concerns, please email info@bee-downtown.com

What’s All the Buzz About?

The Georgia Tech Urban Honey Bee Project and the Piedmont Park Conservancy have joined forces to establish a beehive right in Piedmont Park. The humming sound you hear nestled under the canopy of trees surrounding the Education Garden is actually home to thousands of the world’s greatest pollinators!

Zipping from flower to flower to collect pollen and nectar, Piedmont Park’s biodiversity offers the perfect environment for these busy little creatures. Not only do our bees play a crucial role in supporting the garden, but their presence affords us with important learning opportunities relating to the interconnectedness of our natural food systems.

On Friday, June 23rd, the Georgia Tech Urban Honey Bee Project visited the Conservancy’s apiary to educate the public on honey bees and participants engaged in a variety of activities that supported healthy bee-friendly initiatives. Onlookers gathered in curiosity as bees hovered around the mesh netting of the beekeepers protective gear during the splitting of the hive. Children crowded around tables to create their very own seed bombs out of clay and wildflower seeds, a fun and environmentally friendly technique for ‘greening’ urban spaces. And, golden colored hexagons overflowing with uncapped honey could be viewed from the observation hive. Providing unique insights into the wonderful world of bees and their behaviors, the complex structure of the honeycomb also reaffirmed bees are quite the builders!

With so much going on, it is no wonder bees are all the buzz these days.

With the garden and honey bees working symbiotically, we encourage all visitors to gain a greater understanding of the environment and one’s connection to it. The Conservancy’s educational programs are a priority for our non-profit and are viewed as an integral part in fulfilling our mission.

Guest Post by Krystal Collier

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