Listen inside a beehive

DSC_1665Decades ago, my friend Aerial Gilbert (right) was a beekeeper. She loved the sight, smell and feel of bees in her hands – like any crazy beekeeper will try to convince you is a magical thing.

When Aerial lost her sight, she had to forego some things – only a few – for safety. After living with bees for eighteen years, she tearfully gave her hives away. But now, she’s ready for a comeback. She joined the Sonoma County Beekeepers Association and got a beekeeper buddy to help her.

She’s wearing the white suit again, and overjoyed with two new hives in her backyard.

When she told me she listens to her hive with a stethoscope, I got an idea. I have some professional sound recording equipment. Why not drop a mic in and find out what it sounds like in there?

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And that we did. We heard the ping of bees landing on the wire mesh bottom screen. We heard fanning that sounded like a jet fighter. And we heard the hum of a super-organism, a collective happy sound that all is good in the family. Take a listen yourself.

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We plan to keep testing with different microphones, so stay tuned for sound updates on this blog.

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