My parents have the opportunity through their insurance company, to attend several activities at nearby locations throughout the year. This summer, they were offered "Zoo Walks", where they were allowed free entry into the zoo up to 2 hours before opening to the general public, along with a "Meet the Keeper" program once a month. They invited us to go along, since they were allowed to bring one guest each. We had a nice time there, although it was hot. We were able to see about half the Zoo before too many people were there, and left shortly after lunch.
It was a relief to cool off in the pool once we returned home. We've been having an issue lately, however, with the bees in the pool. Apparently they discovered that our pool is an excellent water source once everything else dried up. They have been swarming around the ladder, where there is an opening in the solar cover. This makes it difficult to get it to use the pool ourselves!
I called the Apiarist who tends our hives over the weekend. He came out and set up a sugar-water reservoir for them down near their hives. There may be fewer bees at our pool now, but still anxiety causing when you want to climb the ladder to actually enter the pool. Over the past few days, I've learned about 30 minutes before we hope to swim, if I throw back the solar cover so that there is about a 2 foot space of water surrounding the ladder, the number of bees diminishes enough to allow safe entry into the pool, as well as careful removal of the solar cover.
This morning I discovered that another hen was missing. I found her beneath the roosts in the Chick-bit house, where she apparently fell peacefully asleep last night. These poor ladies are definitely showing their age, laying very few eggs, and not getting around as quickly as in the past. That pullet egg that J found a while back must have been a fluke, as we haven't seen another in 2 weeks. I would actually expect them to start laying in the next week or so.