Showing posts with label Personal Nonfiction. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Personal Nonfiction. Show all posts

Saturday, July 15, 2023

Honeybee Rescue by Loree Griffen Burns: a review and personal connection


Genre:  Nonfiction, all ages
Source:  I purchased a copy


This is a wonderful book about rescuing bees.  The man who found bees in his garage was a beekeeper. He noticed the bees and realized that one of his hives had split. That means when a hive gets to big to support all of the bees, the queen and half of the bees leave and find a new home.  The man called in someone who specializes in bee rescues.  Being a beekeeper doesn’t mean if you find a swarm somewhere that you know what to do to capture them and put them in a box. Most beekeepers do not rescue bees. If you would like to know more about bee rescues then read this book. If you would like to learn more about bees, then read this book and check out the references in the back of the book.  This is a nonfiction picture book that people of all ages will enjoy.

Personal Connection:

I found out about this book through Kate Messner's introduction of guest authors for Teachers Write. Since she doesn’t charge anything for the three weeks of writing lessons, she asks that we consider supporting  the authors by purchasing their books.  I try to do this every year. I usually purchase books for middle grades and young adults since I teach eighth graders.  When I saw this beautiful picture book I knew I had to have it. 

 You see, about seven or eight years ago my husband started keeping bees. It started with being invited to a bee club meeting to learn about bees. Then he bought his first hive of bees.  From there it escalated.  Not only does my husband keep bees, he rescues bees like Mr. Nelson in the book. Some of the best honey we have ever gotten has come from hives he has rescued.

The house I grew up in had honey bees living in one of the walls. Every year we would have someone come out and smoke the bees out, and every year they were back. I now know why that happened.  When we sold the house to move to Florida the living room wall bowed outward. Honey was seeping through the wallpaper.  I was afraid of those bees, because every time I mowed I would be attacked.

When my husband started keeping bees in the backyard I wanted nothing to do with them. I would sit in our yard swing and watch him. He started telling me what he was observing. I started going closer and closer to the hives until one day he mentioned that I didn’t seem to be afraid of the bees. He was correct. I had lost most of my fear. I soon learned how much I enjoyed them when I was sitting in our yard swing reading, while he trimmed a bush. When he tossed a branch away a group of bees flew out. He quickly got a box, put a couple of waxed frames in it. He tried to find the queen. I walked over with my camera capturing it on video. He suddenly pointed out that the hand I was capturing in the video was my own. I had stuck my fingers gently into the midst of those bees and was moving them aside trying to help him find the queen. He found her and put her in a queen clip, and put the clip inside the box.  I stood amazed as I watched the bees walking right into the box because they could smell her pheromones. I have not participated in any bee rescues. I have on occasion gone with him and watched him remove a swarm with his bee vacuum. I am constantly asking him questions, buying him books and even talking to my student about bees. This is a great way to teach anyone about bee rescues.