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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Lexington, NC
    Posts
    68

    Default captured my first swarm

    Not a question or anything just sharing my experience of hiving my first swarm. Only being a bee keeper for a year now and I only had one hive last year which was a package, I did not have a problem with them swarming. This year I bought two more nucs to give me a total of three hives. This morning while working my garden I saw my bees start to swarm and make a huge funnel coming out of the hive and nearly 30 feet tall over the trees. I was pretty sure they were swarming and sure enough they move over about 30 feet and the swarm bundled up on a limb about 3-4 feet off the ground. The bundle was about 3 feet long and seemed to have a lot of bees. Since I am brand new and had no idea what to do I called the man I bought my nucs from who also lives here in NC and has given me a lot of good advice and he walked me through how to hive them. It was much easier than I expected but since I had a hive ready and some drawn comb for it just in case, probablly helped some also. After several pictures and about 30 minutes later I had the swarm hived up and in their new location. Put on a feeder for them and now I will just sit back and hope they take to their new home. Since I do not know what size a normal swarm of bees it I posted some of the pictures. Here is the site of the pictures if anyone is interested. http://www.flickr.com/photos/15508638@N03/

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Lycoming New York
    Posts
    193

    Default

    NICE CATCH Tony

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Rockville, In
    Posts
    256

    Cool Great Job!

    Gives a guy a nice feeling, now don't it.
    Good job, I'd say you're now a beekeeper

    From your pictures I'd have to say that it was a huge swarm. Keep an eye on the mother hive, may have more swarms in it in a week or two, look for queen cells, see how many have emerged or ready to emerge; could be more than one virgin left behind.
    Steve<br /><br /><a href=\"http://www.cozynestfarm.com\" target=\"_blank\">www.cozynestfarm.com</a><br /><br />All that\'s golden must be honey

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Lexington, NC
    Posts
    68

    Default

    Hey, Yeah I thought it was a pretty good size awarm also. My hive consist of 2 deep hive bodies with a totl of 19 frames and just now put a second super on it, so it was a good healthy hive. The guy that gave me the advise on how to catch it also said it may swarm again in a week or so. I checked it throughly today and found one capped queen cell and one nearly ready to cap. There were also about 3-4 others that they were forming but I could not tell if there were larva in them or not. He actually told me that I could take the frames with queen cells and divide them with a couple other frames and make a few nucs for myself but I think I am going to leave them as they are and just see if they swarm again or not, if for no oher eason I am a little short on supplies now untill I can get a second hive ready to go. I guess I need to keep 2 or 3 ready at all times this time of year now. I actually hope they do not because I would like to keep them a good strong hive to get a good honey crop from them.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,667

    Default

    Nice BIG swarm!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, N.C.
    Posts
    5,080

    Default

    Good job. Nice swarm. I had 7 boxes ready this morning. I now have 3.
    Used 4 today. I'll have to get more ready in the morning. Swarm season in NC is full blown right now, so you other locals better have boxes ready if you don't want to lose them.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Crystal Falls, Mi.
    Posts
    181

    Default

    Atta boy...... nice job, and real nice swarm. Glad you were able to get it..... Great pics too...
    T.G.
    When I grow up, I want to be like John K.......

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Austin TX USA
    Posts
    300

    Default

    Wow. That is an impressive swarm! Great job.

    I read somewhere about some guy who hangs black stocking caps from trees and the caps are stuffed to form round black balls. The swarms for some reason tend to land on these black caps hanging in the yard. It might make your neighbors wonder about you though.
    ~May your hive thrive
    Aisha

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hampton, VA, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Another one!

    I also caught my first swarm yesterday! My picts are on my blog - pretty cool!
    Newbee Rich
    Antcliff Farms

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Cameron, MO
    Posts
    586

    Default 1st swarm

    I got my second call today about a swarm. This was 5 minutes away so my wife and I went over(w/ my camera w/ dead batteries! doh) and gently shook the bees(close to 4-5 gallon size) into a hive (minus 3 frames for all of them to fit). Most landed in the box but a bunch flew around also. I used a screen top as this box was for a nuc I was going to get and the bees where on top of the screen fanning away. Alot of the bees went back up to the tree limb. I left the hive there until dusk and the wife will go see if they all went into the hive. I am pretty sure the queen made it into the hive but the bees didnt all march in to bee with her. A majority of the bees stayed in the hive. The ones that where left clumped back where they started on the tree branch. is this normal for some of the bees to hang out on the branch for a while or did that queen not make it into the hive? I think I screwed up when I put some lemongrass oil on a cottonball and tossed it in the hive before the shake. And will have the wife take it back out tonight. If all else fails I'll try it again tomorrow if they stick around!
    I also have my first cutout to do tomorrow! I'll post again w/ those plans!!!
    thanks for your patience bee mentors this rookie has a ways to go yet!!!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Cameron, MO
    Posts
    586

    1st cutout!

    Ok I am scheduled for my 1st cutout tomorrow from a contractor tearing down an old building soon(so time is a factor). Its up in a soffit and he has scaffolding and chainsaws ready. From what I have read I will cut out an area big enough to get to the hive(what 4-5' in length and the width of the soffit?). Then collect comb and possibly the queen? put the comb in a hive body and wait for the bees to walk in. Then that night collect the bee's and off to my new site? Put an excluder on the bottom of my hive to keep the queen in for a couple days or 4. I dont have any brood frames around and my box will be brand new. I have some wax foundation but thats it for smells. How does this plan sound for this newbee? I appreciate your advice bee mentors!!!

    Also for all of you Veterans I want to thank you for my Freedom today!!! God Bless America!!!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Cameron, MO
    Posts
    586

    Question 1st swarm

    My wife went over at dusk and gathered all the bees from our swarm as most had entered the hive box and took them home. She closed up the entrance and I'll put on a queen includer on top and prop open the top a bit for a few days. There is plenty of Locust and blackberries blooming now so should I add some sugar water anywy to get the girls back up to strength?:confused:
    I'll also go try to get any leftover bee's in the morning in a bucket.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    owensboro,ky
    Posts
    2,240

    Smile sugar

    if you are having a decent flow they won't take sugar. sounds like everything is fine
    "Wine is a constant proof that God loves us and loves to see us happy" Ben Franklin

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, N.C.
    Posts
    5,080

    Default

    If you cut the brood out and install it in your frames, the excluder is not needed. The brood will hold them there.

    When cutting out the comb, cut all the way around the outside and cut the center brood frames last. As you cut, the queen will run. You want her to run toward the middle, not the crack and crevices along the outside.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Cameron, MO
    Posts
    586

    Default 1st swarm

    Idee thanks good info!!! I wont need to to "include" the queen on the cutout since there should bee comb in that hive(makes sense now that you said it!!!). I'll cut the comb from outside towards the middle to keep the queen located somewhat. I did some research on the building they are tearing down. This building was built in the 1800's It has been vacant a long time. It should be interesting to see what I find!!!
    Regarding my other post on the swarm we caught today. I should "include" the queen on that hive correct?

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, N.C.
    Posts
    5,080

    Default

    >>>Regarding my other post on the swarm we caught today. I should "include" the queen on that hive correct?<<<

    I find it necessary only when I leave the swarm in the area it was caught, where the scout bees can find it and lead it away. Once moved into another area, they normally stay.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Cameron, MO
    Posts
    586

    Default

    Idee, ok thanks they will bee 5-10 miles away from where I found them. But if you see my other link(What a day) my wife just found another swarm in the barn across the road!!! I better close that one off maybee? Thank you. I know these questions arise almost daily!!! I try to keep up on them but there is soooo much that goes through these great posts its hard to keep track of. Someday I will be quiet as a mouse!!!maybee

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, N.C.
    Posts
    5,080

    Default

    If she found them in old equipment, they are now a colony, not a swarm. They are in the home of their choice. Why close them?

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