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So, a curiosity question for you experienced in years and knowledge beeks. When we have had a hard year and a lot of die off - like this year across Northern Iowa - do you see a corresponding decrease in swarms? I would think it would follow, but was just wondering. I am not asking whether surviving hives are less likely to swarm, just whether there is a general drop in numbers.
 

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naturally if there is less hives there will be less overall swarming. A lot depends on where the swarm collects after leaving. If its visible to the public than there is a higher chance you will get a call. Last year I started getting swarm calls in mid march. this year I have yet to get a swarm call.
 

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the relationship you are considering is with out a doubt a bit more complex than you might think. for example after a hard winters in the north you typically have sufficient water in the ground to generated an excellent bloom year in the following season... this then could lead to lots of swarming in anything that survived. if the winter is hard enough you likely also have an increased number of nesting sites (now devoid of bees but with wax to attract the bees) so you can have increased swarming that never become evident.
 
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