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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    El Dorado County, CA
    Posts
    605

    Question when to open a swarm box

    i've just introduced young larva to a closed up swarm box. when should the entrance be opened to allow free flight? thanks.
    all that is gold does not glitter

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,799

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    If it's a genuine "Swarm box" ala Alley or Smith, then you usually pull the cells out the next day after you put them in and put them in a hive and dump the bees from the swarm box at the entrance to let them join the colony. If you don't let them out in about 24 hours, they usually die from lack of water. And that's if you leave them a sponge soaked in water for their water supply or spray a lot of water in the cells (Smith method) to give them water.

    Alley didn't even start the cells in the swarm box, he just used it to get them in the mood to rear queens.

    Here's Smith's early discussion:
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesqueenre...tm#TheSwarmBox
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesqueenre...ingTheSwarmBox
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesqueenre...ingTheSwarmBox

    And his later discussion:
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesbetterq...Starter%20Hive

    Picture of Smith's "starter hive":
    http://www.bushfarms.com/images/BQPg46.jpg

    Alley's discussion:
    Setting up:
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesalleymethod.htm#Chapter2
    Releasing the bees from the swarm box:
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesalleyme...romSwarmingBox

    Illustration of Alley's swarm box:
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesalleyme...tm#SwarmingBox
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    El Dorado County, CA
    Posts
    605

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    i have two genuine swarm boxes i "inherited". i closed up and fed syrup and patties to about five pounds of bees, a dequeened swarm and a few frames of nurse bees. after about twenty four hours i added fifteen cups with larva. it looks like most of them are getting built out after another twenty four hours. i've let the bees out and will probably see if they will also finish them. if they drift they will go to queen right nucs that can use the boost. thanks for the links/refresher. i've read and appreciated you're classic reprints but it seems that until i've done the activity i don't completely get it.
    i understand that the swarm box is a starter hive and the cells are moved to a finisher after about twenty four hours.
    it looks like the finisher can be queen right, is that correct? if so does it need an excluder between the queen and cells?
    has anyone had experiance letting a "swarm/starter" finish the cells?
    all that is gold does not glitter

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,799

    Default

    >it looks like the finisher can be queen right, is that correct?
    Yes.

    > if so does it need an excluder between the queen and cells?
    Yes.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

    Default

    strangegardner sezs:
    it looks like the finisher can be queen right, is that correct?

    tecumseh replies:
    the starter or the finisher can be queen right.

    with finishing in the swarm box you just need to make certain the box maintain numbers and has a bit of a dribble of feed to maintain itself during the time period required (about 10 days).

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    El Dorado County, CA
    Posts
    605

    Default

    with finishing in the swarm box you just need to make certain the box maintain numbers and has a bit of a dribble of feed to maintain itself during the time period required (about 10 days).[/QUOTE]

    thanks for the reply! i'm doing what you describe. there are only five cells being built out but they seem to have quite a bit of white wax so i'm hoping to end up with a few finished queens by yours truly. i'm already looking forward to continueing next year.
    i've heard a poet/farmer say if you open a farmer up you will find them to be full of next years. i think the same can be said of beekeepers.
    all that is gold does not glitter

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