First though, the mouse guard. I had already fitted it to the hive a few weeks ago, so all I had to do was to put it in place and then tack it up. I used a large thumbtack instead of a screw. I would have used a screw, but I didn't want to make holes in the wood, plus I'm sure the last thing they would appreciate is some odd vibrating of their house. You should have seen (or felt) the ones returning who banged into me while I was squatting down in front of the hive. With the hive beind white, and my overalls and veil being white, I don't think they saw me in their flight path. But I hurriedly got out of their way so they could get back to coming and going.
As you can see, the girls are rather curious as to what is going on. Like all my other pictures, click on them for a better view, and pay particular attention to the holes...especially on the far right. Notice how they seem to be checking each other out. I'm not sure if they're guard bees, but they're definitely checking out the situation. Even though I'm near the hive, just off to the side with my camera, they acted like they could care less about me and seemed more interested in what this new thing is that's blocking the front door.
It didn't take long before a crowd gathered. There were lots of incoming bees during this time, and I'm sure they were totally confused about the whole situation. It sort of reminded me of a busy airport, where planes are flying into the airport, but because so many people are waiting to disembark ahead of you...you just have to wait it out. I wondered what the guard bees inside the hive were thinking about all these things popping through those holes. Did they realize they were their own sisters? Or did they have to change the method of how they inspect each bee upon arrival back to the hive? I wonder.