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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Sugar Valley, Georgia. USA
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    45

    Default Caught a swarm today, how to install in TBH?

    Help me out guys.. I got a pretty nice swarm of bees this morning and have never placed them in a TBH. Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Monroeville Pa
    Posts
    188

    Default

    Try contacting Joey at www.customwoodkits.com
    He is a very friendly and helpful TBH advocate and beekeeper. He has told me you just open the box and pour them in. The queen seeks highest location in the box and my be in a cluster on the inside of the top of the box. Pour that cluster in and sit the box down and the rest will follow. I have learned this from Joey in preparation of picking up my swarm in a box tomorrow.
    He is in GA.


    Good luck!!

    Carrie

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Medford,WI,USA
    Posts
    33

    Default

    I would install just like you would a package. Put your bars in and dump them in (could put a bit of lemongrass oil if you want). Do you know forsure if you have the queen? If so, place some excluder on your entrance for a few days. If you have some other TBH's I would grab a couple bars of brood and place them with the new swarm.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    643

    Default

    When I'm hiving swarms in either top bar or warre hives I simply open it up and dump them in. I don't deal with lemongrass oil or honey and I've had no issues with them taking up residence. Just make sure you've got the queen in your swarm and make sure you get her in the hive! Otherwise you wake up the next day to find the bees clustered under your hive...in the rain...angry.

    Matt

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    stockton, ca
    Posts
    15

    Default

    yup i just pulled up 10 bars. dumped a rubgy ball sized swarm in and put the bars back on. 3 days and there still there and foraging. now a month and a half later 12 to 20bar drawn and about 16 to go. working out real well.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Sugar Valley, Georgia. USA
    Posts
    45

    Default

    I dumped them in last night after dark and think I got every bee in the box.. I left my entrance holes plugged and there is no way out for them at all. I placed a bag feeder half gallon of 1/1 syrup in there as well and intend to open the entrances tomorrow evening.. they can then come out early Saturday and start foraging around and orienting to the hive.. unless you guys think I should open them up sooner. I am certain that I got the queen.. I picked her up off a board around the cluster an placed her in my bucket!

    I peeked under some of the bars this morning early and found many bees on the bottom of the bars.. I am thinking that is gonna be a GOOD SIGN!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Modesto, CA USA
    Posts
    44

    Default

    I have caught 3 swarms this year, and put them in top bar hives. I did not block the entrance, only kept them in the shade. None have left, and are doing very well.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    643

    Default

    I leave mine open with an entrance reducer. How hot is it there? I'd hate for them to overheat due to their entrance being closed!

    Matt

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Sebastopol, Ca.
    Posts
    307

    Default

    I too strongly suggest that you open the front entrance now and allow them to orient. They will fly around the front of the hive for a day or three so don't disturb them. That's the toughest part for me. Let them do what they've been practicing for about 65 million years and try not to interrupt or interfere as much as possible. I've done what you've done and it is not necessary to keep them locked up. If you have a window, cool, check them daily. If not, then suffer for about a week to 10 days while she and everyone else gets busy. You'll have no new bees for about three weeks, but it will work out. They've been at it for awhile in spite of us.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Sugar Valley, Georgia. USA
    Posts
    45

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Cacklewack View Post
    I leave mine open with an entrance reducer. How hot is it there? I'd hate for them to overheat due to their entrance being closed!

    Matt
    My TBH bottom is screen wire all the way to both ends. I think that may be enough.

    Quote Originally Posted by LenInNorCal View Post
    I too strongly suggest that you open the front entrance now and allow them to orient. They will fly around the front of the hive for a day or three so don't disturb them. That's the toughest part for me. Let them do what they've been practicing for about 65 million years and try not to interrupt or interfere as much as possible. I've done what you've done and it is not necessary to keep them locked up. If you have a window, cool, check them daily. If not, then suffer for about a week to 10 days while she and everyone else gets busy. You'll have no new bees for about three weeks, but it will work out. They've been at it for awhile in spite of us.
    Ok guys... I'm going home to pull the cork out of the bottle!

    I trust it will be OK.. prollem is the "now you got em.. now you don't" feeling!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    643

    Default

    I had the same feeling as you with my first top bar hive. But with beekeeping it seems that just as you think you've got enough bees, more keep coming to you, until you're overrun! Soon you'll be scrounging for boxes in which to put them! I'd not worry too much.

    Matt

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Monroeville Pa
    Posts
    188

    Default

    I just put in my box of bees that I got off a man who got a swarm. He had them in a cardboard box and open for the bees for over 1 week. The box was weathered and had lots of comb. I was scared to death. But I did it. They are now in my new top bar hive. I had to tear comb from the box as it was attached. Wish me luck!!!
    Carrie

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Sugar Valley, Georgia. USA
    Posts
    45

    Default

    Great to hear and good luck to ya!

    I got home yesterday deciding to remove the cork from my hive entrance. I noticed several bees around the hive body and underneath stuck to the screen bottom.. then I noticed that old wooden knot that was in the end of the hive body, which was a little loose and soft.. they had worked their way through and were comin and going as the wanted! I popped the cork anyway to make it easier.. They seem content, but I am sooo ready to open and look to see how much comb is being drawn! But I know I should wait!!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Ennis, TX USA
    Posts
    5,124

    Default

    Patience Hillbilly…..Patience
    Last edited by Bizzybee; 06-05-2009 at 03:12 PM. Reason: remove quote
    Chuck Norris has a grizzly bear carpet in his room. The bear isn't dead it is just afraid to move.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Sugar Valley, Georgia. USA
    Posts
    45

    Default

    I know Hillbilly 1.. but you know old hillbilly 2 is not a patient man!
    Last edited by Bizzybee; 06-05-2009 at 03:12 PM. Reason: remove quote

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Sugar Valley, Georgia. USA
    Posts
    45

    Default

    Well after all that.. they left! I came home from a weekend trip and they had packed up.. either they didn't like their new home or the queen didn't make it into the hive as I thought. Well.. it didn't cost me anything except some time that I love spending with bees! But I sure wanted my new TBH to get going this year. But unless a swarm happens soon and close.. it over for that box!

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    643

    Default

    Sorry to hear that, Bitteroot.

    Matt

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Sugar Valley, Georgia. USA
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    45

    Default

    Thanks Matt.. I may start a support group for broken hearted beeks!
    Last edited by Bizzybee; 06-08-2009 at 08:54 PM. Reason: Unnecessary quoting

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Sebastopol, Ca.
    Posts
    307

    Wink

    I think we would all be in it after a time. Some a short time, some later, but those girls are definitely heart breakers!
    Last edited by Bizzybee; 06-08-2009 at 08:54 PM. Reason: Unnecessary quoting

  20. #20
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Modesto, CA USA
    Posts
    44

    Default

    This is a quote form BjornBee from another site about swarms.

    "I've read a number of threads about swarming, swarm traps, etc. And I did not want to bury this in some worn out topic. So I hope this might help someone.

    One of the best books on the topic of swarms is a small book entitled "swarming" from ROOT publications. Item #56 (1-800-289-7668)

    It covers studies in swarm trap comparisions, feral colony preference, why hives swarm, and a host of other topics all related to swarming, control, and prevention. It is a collection of articles written in Bee Culture from people to include Roger Morse, Bonney, and others.

    It is about swarming, but it will enlighten you in the facts of swarms favoring small cavities, the fact that most feral colonies requeen every year, etc.

    Well worth the $5"

    I Purchased the book, and one of the many things i got from it was that a swarm does not like the sunlight, and should be kept in some sort of shade until they have some brood. May help in the future, or it may not have been your issue, only the bees know why.

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