Picked-up 2 swarms yesterday.

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by handyman dave, Jul 28, 2009.

  1. handyman dave

    handyman dave New Member

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    I picked-up 2 swarms yesterday. Both were about soccer-ball sized and about 5 feet off the ground.
    I got one into a 10 frame deep yesterday with a patty & 1:1 without any problem.
    This morning I attempted to hive the second, gathered last evening. Apparently, I didn't get the cover on fast enough and suddenly there were all sorts of bees in the air! :eek: About 20 minutes later it was clear they were forming new swarm cluster in a small apple tree about 40 feet from the hive. I waited another 30 minutes and sucked them up again with the cat litter container "bee vac." This time, I had the patty and the 1:1 in the hive and ready, and was really fast with the cover.
    When I left them tonight, about 200 bees had clustered again in the tree, but the rest are in the hive and hanging around out front. Hopefully, they will draw out some comb on the new foundation, and give momma a chance to make some babies for winter. I hope the vestige cluster will find its way back to her.
    I am feeding like CRAZY, with some hives taking a gallon in less than 2 days.
    I bought another 100# of sugar today. With all the new equipment to house the girls and all the food, this is getting very expensive! I'll never make the money back, but it is fun!
    It reminds of a farmer friend's comment a long time ago; "If you want to end up farming with $100,000, ... start with $200,000." ;)
     
  2. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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    Way to go Dave! :D

    I had a 4 queen swarm today. First time I had one with that many queens. Now if I can only figure which hive they came from since it was from my own yard... :cry:
     

  3. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    I dont use a bee vac on swarms. I usually try to gatherr them in a hive body without such. My guess is you may not have got the queen on the first try
     
  4. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    If you left them in the vac overnight I would say thay got hot and left just so they could cool off.

    Shake that last litle clump into the hive or at least in front on a sheet or top cover, they should march in. Numbers are key in late swarms.

    Sounds like you know about the need for feed, pour it to them.

    I don't use a vac for swarms either.

    G3
     
  5. handyman dave

    handyman dave New Member

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    The first swarm was around the trunk of a city-owned tree along the street. I don't know how I could have shaken them free or gotten them over something into which to shake them. They were very docile and I didn't use any protection. There were less than 20 dead bees out of the vac so I don't think I hurt them very much at all. :)

    The second swarm was really feisty, buzzing me before I even got close to the cluster. I put on my suit and gloves and very gently vac'd them off leaves and branches on which they had already drawn considerable comb. They are still in the hive, eating and drinking. I'll check to see what they are doing in a few days. (I hope they settle-down a little, they are still buzzing me! Bjorn Bee advised they were a "dry swarm" so their feistiness is to be expected.)

    The couple hundred bees from the second swarm are still deep in the apple tree, surrounding a fairly large branch. How would you suggest I get them in-front of the hive?
     
  6. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    if they have built comb just cut it off with the bees on it.

    Big clusters on the side of something, I like to use a big dust pan or cardboard box (use the box and bend the cardboard to fit around the tree or fence post and secure it with a little bit of duct tape), a little smoke will move them into the box or dust pan. I have gotten them off of a fence post using a sheet spread out on the ground and wrapped around the post, sit the hive body on the sheet and a little smoke to get them marching in.

    Lemon grass oil and/or a little squirt of sugar water will help entice them to move also.

    G3
     
  7. winevines

    winevines New Member

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    What do you look for when trying to determine which of your hives swArmed? EspeciAlly these later season swarms? Lack of eggs And larvae?