Wednesday, June 4, 2008

A Tale of Two Colonies

With two colonies in the back yard, I don't want to be as prosaic as referring to them as the Langstroth and Top Bar colonies, so I am going to take a page from city bees and name them after literary greats.
Colony One, housed in a Langstroth hive, caught as a swarm between Killen and Florence, AL will from here on be known as Machado in honor of the father of Brazilian letters, Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis. Naturally, the queen of this colony will be Capitolina, or Capitu for short. A tragic female character from _Dom Casmurro_, arguably Machado's greatest novel.
Colony Two, housed in a homemade top bar hive, removed from a porch column in Huntsville, AL will from here on be known as Shakespeare for William Shakespeare, the great English playwright. The queen of this colony will be Portia, the strongest heroine in all of Shakespeare's works, and more particularly from _The Merchant of Venice_.
Of course, I have never seen Portia and it has been weeks since I have seen Capitu, but at least I now have something creative to call them.

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