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Bees, Hot Weather What’s Next?

I’m beginning to feel defeated. My poor hummingbird friends have been forced from their feeders by a bunch of bully bees. In large numbers, there are varieties of these nectar predators that have invaded the hummingbird food sources.

I understand bees are very important to the natural order of many living things, but enough already. Yes, those bees helped flower my petal garden. They ensured our tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers made another appearance this summer. I’m grateful yet sad for the tiny birds that give us so much enjoyment at the feeders.

The bees also took over the grape jelly feeder that was a popular feeding station for a number of Baltimore orioles this spring and early summer. I’ve tried to move the hummingbird feeders to other locations but to no avail. Those dang bees are too smart for me. I guess I will just take down the feeders and hope for a better year next season.

This sometimes-wild weather also has us all looking skyward these days. The storm last week that produced a tornado in Dallas (W.Va.) also blew through the West Liberty area near our home. While we did not witness a twister, the wind was fierce. It knocked down trees, stripped leaves and limbs, and wreaked havoc on my rose bushes. Outdoor furniture went flying, but amazingly enough, the bird feeders remained intact.

The folks in Dallas weren’t so lucky. Homes and other structures were damaged or destroyed. People lost property, but no one was injured or killed. They will be picking up the pieces for weeks, maybe months.

Despite all the advancements in weather forecasting, nothing can prevent the destruction and devastation that has been striking our earth. Some call it climate change; others say it’s the natural path of our earth’s eventual expiration date. As residents of the Ohio Valley, we can all relate to the woes of the people in Kentucky whose homes, businesses and lives have been lost to unbelievable amounts of flooding waters.

Then there is the extreme heat in the south and west that has brought about a different kind of destruction. Hot, dry winds make wildfires extremely difficult to contain in western states. A day doesn’t go by that we don’t see video of a wildfire consuming homes and forests. It’s sad to say it has become commonplace.

In the other Dallas (Texas), the thermometer has reached 100 degrees and above every day for weeks. The residents there must conserve water and pray that fires aren’t a threat. It’s too hot to walk the dog or to allow kids to play on a playground. In that type of heat, even a swimming pool offers little relief.

Whatever the future holds in our fair valley, it’s safe to say that we as a greater community don’t hesitate to lend a hand, donate what others need and simply say — we look out for our neighbors.

Now if someone can just tell me if the bees know something that I don’t know about the coming winter. Just wondering.

Heather Ziegler can be reached via email at hziegle@!theintelligencer.net.

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