Littlest un and I listened to and counted bees today (they wanted to stroke too, but I had to dissuade them!)
My favourite piece of English custom / folklore is the tradition of talking to bees.
Bees in hives are to be kept up to date with visitors, marriages, illness and deaths in the family, especially that of the bee keeper.
If the bees aren’t kept informed of the latest news or is thought they could leave the hive, or die themselves.
For more folklory bee facts see http://bumblebeeconservation.org/news/anthonys-blog/bees-in-folklore