Wren’s nest turns into a bee hive full of activity

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Way back in May I wrote about our excitement that a jenny wren had built a scruffy nest of leaves and twigs on the side of a trailer of straw.

The nest is actually built by the male bird and needs the approval of the female before egg laying can start in earnest.

We had assumed that all was going well as the nest had been lined with feathers and there was plenty of wren comings and goings around the nest site.

But then everything came to a halt. Instead of the fluttering of bird wings entering and leaving the nest, there was the blur of bees wings and buzzing of worker bumble bees as they constructed wax cells within the nest.

Our wren’s des res is now a bee hive. Disaster has struck however. Whether it was because of the weight of the cells within the nest the front part has broken off. Half of it now lies on the floor and the bees are very upset.

I cannot think it has been knocked off because both John and I, and especially me, have a very healthy respect for bees. Call it fear on my part.

Although John is still taking bales off the trailer, he has left a core of support bales that the nest remains attached to. We are not thinking that far ahead as to when we need to move the trailer after harvest to gather up bales.

Today I gathered my courage to go and inspect the broken hive. The bumble bees are still working at the cells both on the side of the trailer and in those lying on the floor.

As the part of the nest/hive on the ground was in peril of being kicked over by rampaging dogs, I fetched a spade, quickly scooped up the nest and placed it on the trailer bed close to the other half of the hive.

Buzz buzz buzz buzz. But no attack. Perhaps they knew I was trying to help. I think when the time comes that we need the trailer we shall just have to forklift off the remaining bales, as the bees seem to building inside them as well, and take the lot to a safe place.

The wrens have not disappeared completely but we have not found their new nest.

Around the farm buildings there are several pairs of swallows with nests, but strangely, the pair that have nested in the trailer for the last five years, have not returned.

Jackdaws are still attempting to nest in the chimney stacks of the farmhouse but hopefully are foiled by the netting over the top of the stacks.

In the willow tree by one of our ponds the barn owls are busy with their brood.

Ducks and geese have already successfully reared their offspring on our main pond and, in the goose’s case, left the area.

I just hope the wrens have built a secret bee proof hideaway and that if I leave the bumblebees alone, they won’t bother me.

Mrs Downs