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Thread: Swarm Control

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    45,464

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    This happened on my long medium and not my TBH but I think it's important. The bees didn't even fill half the three box long hive before they swarmed. I think I should have added some empty frames in the brood nest to get them spread out horizontally more.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Berkey, OH, USA
    Posts
    1,486

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    Interesting, were you using a follower board?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    45,464

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    No follower board. Just a 48 3/4" long medium depth hive with a SBB and Migratory covers. They did well in this last year and pretty much filled it, so I was surprised when they swarmed before it was half full.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Boynton Beach, Florida, USA
    Posts
    278

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    Hi Guys,

    My first tbh wanted to swarm with just half the hive full of comb. No crowding or congestion was apparent. The hive reached a critical "mass" with bees, stores and available forage. The hive priorities, dynamics and timing were just what Walt Wright has been describing in his articles in Bee Culture.

    Much more is involved than just congestion. A whole set of broodnest dynamics provides for the best possible survival conditions for both the swarm and the parent colony.

    At first it's a shock to see a thb swarm that doesn't meet the "classical" swarming conditions. But I think the reproductive focus in a hive parallels that which is seen throughout the rest of nature.

    Personally, I have found the articles in Bee Culture hard to put together as a whole. If I recall correctly, the first article was in 1996 or there abouts and some nomenclature has changed through time. The $10 Walt Wright wants for 60 pages, puts his observations in an easier format to comprehend.

    Regards
    Dennis

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Columbia, South Carolina USA
    Posts
    2,598

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    How do we order the manuscript. I think the articles are great - but they are strung out and I do not have them all.

    Keith

    [This message has been edited by kgbenson (edited June 06, 2004).]

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Boynton Beach, Florida, USA
    Posts
    278

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    Hi Guys,

    Rob Koss posted the address over in biological beekeeping:

    To anyone interested in reading more about Walt's "nectar management" method of reducing swarming, he has more copies available. He sells them for $10 apiece to cover shipping and printing costs. Write to
    Walt at:
    Walt Wright
    Box 10
    Elkton, TN 38455

    It's a good read - I learned a lot from it. It caused me to pay more attention to what is actually going on in a beehive throughout the year.

    ------------------
    Rob Koss

    Regards
    Dennis

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Boynton Beach, Florida, USA
    Posts
    278

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    Hi Guys,

    My tbh is preparing to swarm. It's about 1/2 full of comb with lots of room in empty comb for both brood and more food.

    My season must be a few weeks behind yours Michael.

    Regards
    Dennis

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,464

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    >getting ready to swarm
    So.... whacha gonna do about it?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Boynton Beach, Florida, USA
    Posts
    278

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    Hi Michael,

    If I had an empty top bar hive I would split them.

    But I will cut out cells instead. Two rounds done a week apart should take care it.

    Regards
    Dennis
    Who is building some of those Michael style top bars. I like the idea better than my splined top bars.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,464

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    I checked mine Saturday. All of the combs in the brood nest were perfect. But the last comb is starting to curve now. So I'm moving combs into the center to try to get them to draw them straight. They were to the point where they wanted some honey comb on the end of the frame and so they cheated it on the end for fatter comb.

    So they will cheat off of the beveled bars too. But so far not as much.

    I do still think it works the best of what I've tried.

    Mine are the corner of a 1 by. so they end up a 3/4" x 3/4" x 1" triangle. This is nailed and glued onto the bar in the center.

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