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Thread: three swarms

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Oakland, CA
    Posts
    13

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    My bees have swarmed three weeks in a row. This is my 2nd yr of beekeeping and I had just one 2-deep hive. After the first swarm, I removed one of the old deeps and added two new deep hives. Is it that the bees do not like new hives and new frames? They seem to just hang around the entry; there is not a lot of going in and out of the hive. Are they too hot? The weather has been 70's in the day and 40's to 50's at night. Is this too much of a swing in temperature so they get too hot in the day? After the second swarm, I left two queen cells. Today, after the third swarm, I left only one queen cell. How do the bees behave when they are waiting for the queen? Are they still supposed to be in and out of the hive foraging? And how do I make more ventilation? Should I make a space between the deeps or below the super?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Charleston, WV
    Posts
    172

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    For ventilation, I use a screened bottom board and a stick under the outer cover...that's all I do. Of course, the whole setup is on cement blocks so air can get underneath. I had some trouble with one hive last year similar to what you describe. I had one main swarm and 2 after-swarms. It really made a weak hive of the original for awhile. If you can catch the swarm, some suggest using the newspaper method to put them back together...and sometimes swarms just happen. Make sure you are doing all the right things to prevent swarming and then just enjoy the fun of catching swarms when they do it...and they will do it sometimes regardless of what you do...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,492

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    Add some ventilation. Add some empty supers. Open up the brood nest. Catch the swarms. [img]smile.gif[/img]

    You can make more ventilation by putting an open (no tray in) Screened Bottom Board (SBB) and some kind of top ventilation. A couple of shingle shims under the inner cover work great. You can even stagger the boxes forward and backwards 3/4" to leave a gap.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Oakland, CA
    Posts
    13

    Post

    What does "open up the brood" mean?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Silicon Valley, CA
    Posts
    1,244

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    Did you recapture any of the swarms ?? If so, I would be willing to take them off your hands. Am in San Jose.

    They are certainly not too hot. My best guess is that by adding the new deep, you managed to separate the queen cells enough that the new queen did not find them before they hatched and therfore did not kill them. I have regularly seen 2-3 successive swarms spaced about a week apart.

    I usually, grab them when they cluster and throw them into a hive with last year's queen.

    Fuzzy

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,492

    Post

    >What does "open up the brood" mean?

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesswarmcontrol.htm
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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