I went to a Backwards Beekeepers meeting yesterday and ran into Roberta who I know from the Chicken group. She's a very active Beekeeper and saver and relocator. It turns out that she had a box of bees looking for a new home and offered to bring it over this morning.
She said that it was a cutout in a squirrel box. I thought that squirrel box was a technical bee term but it turns out it was a box made for squirrels to live in that gets strapped to a tree. It hadn't occurred to me that people would want to encourage squirrels to live near them, but maybe they're less ambivalent about squirrels than I am.
The squirrel box must have looked good to the bees because they moved in. Here it is on top of my hive box. Roberta said that we should let them settle down for a while and then move the comb from the squirrel box into my hive box. Hopefully this will encourage them to stay and set up shop in my yard. We'll see how it goes.
Update: I went to check on them when I got home from work. I couldn't see anything from the front so I edged around to the left and peeked around the back to see if I could see anything. There's a hole in the squirrel box that faces the back. There were bees piled all along the edge of the hole. It might have been my imagination but it seemed like they started moving around a bit once I got there.
It's kind of hard to see so I lightened this next photo to try to emphasize the bees. It looks jammed solid. A couple bees flew out while I was taking pictures. I didn't have my suit on.
This is a picture of me running away after one flew out and hit my neck.
I got a slightly better picture tonight cuz I got home a little earlier.
All it cost me was one bee sting to the hand. I wonder how many times I'll have to learn that lesson.