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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Mtn. View, Arkansas, USA
    Posts
    1,300

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    Most prime swarms I catch that come from my overwintered colonies will supersede the queen they swarmed with within 2 months of swarming. My swarming period is April/May so the supersedure is complete in July/Aug. The problem I see with using a swarm queen is the danger of a failed supersedure and going into winter with a queen that may not make it through the winter.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Silicon Valley, CA
    Posts
    1,235

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    Masto,

    Tell you what, you have 3 hives, give me $60 and I'll look inside them and tell you that I re-queened them ( lying of course ). It is unlikely that you will know the difference from the production output.

    Last year's february swarm produced 5 ( count them ) supers of honey and is still going strong today. If the queen gets poor the bees will replace her.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Belfast, Ireland
    Posts
    458

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    Quote Originally Posted by MastoDon View Post
    So, a couple of old-timers at a meeting I went to earlier this month were saying (and I'm paraphrasing, here) that since swarms were always accompanied by the old queen from their former colony, the beek should replace her because she's already a year old and will be drying up pretty soon.
    Just goes to show you can't always rely on the old timers. She could be 4 years old or an unmated virgin. The 'drying up' does not just depend just on age, but also on how how many drones she mated with and how much sperm she stored in her spermatheca when she mated.
    Last edited by jonathan; 03-20-2011 at 12:25 PM.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Nelson, South Island, New Zealand
    Posts
    532

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    Quote Originally Posted by NasalSponge View Post
    I have had month old hives swarm....old queen, I think not.
    If I was having month old hives swarm I would be asking questions this is barely enough time to even get a round of brood laying and hatching done.

    When I say swarm I'm talking about the primary swarm with the original queen not an afterswarm with a virgin.

    If the queen is still vigorous and laying well she should be able to keep her brood nest full of brood if she is not so vigorous her laying will slow and her brood area will become full of honey.

    As for only strong healthy colonies swarming thats not quite true, there's a lot of swarming of hives infested with varroa and they are generally not in a healthy state.

    It comes down to what you believe to be true, and for us and our business we will not breed from swarm hives and we will requeen swarm hives because we believe that continually having swarmy queens around laying swarmy drones will result in more and more swarmy queens.

    Just our own personal opinion.

    frazz

  5. #25
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Nelson, South Island, New Zealand
    Posts
    532

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonathan View Post
    Just goes to show you can't always rely on the old timers. She could be 4 years old or an unmated virgin. The 'drying up' does not just depend just on age, but also on how how many drones she matd with and how much sperm she stored in her spermatheca. when she mated.
    the way I read it it is the "oldtimers" are talking about the primary swarm when they say old queen, they are obviously not talking about an afterswarm with a virgin.

    and I think most "oldtimers" would also understand all the variables about number of drones mated with etc etc,

    In my opinion thats how they made it to the title of oldtimers.

    frazz

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    robertsdale,Al.,USA
    Posts
    236

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    ALL of my hives are from swarms or cut-outs....got 1 that had been in a house for over 30yrs...no exageration,it was 3ft tall,6in deep ,&over 16ft long with most of it covered in bees....when I luckily found&got the queen in the box I had brought 3 med supers.....came back that evening to pick them up&had to go home&get 2 more boxes for the bees that were bearding..... that queen filled 3 supers with brood&the hive made 7 supers of honey...in the middle of this that colony swarmed a big full basketball size that I chased around through the neighbors yards...right now she has brood in 4 frames in the 4th super,7 in the 3rd,&8 in the bottom 2, with only queen cups ....as soon as I find some cells that hive will get a 3way split....some swarms are great&some,like the 1 I got last Sat. aren't...they killed their queen the 2nd day I had them

  7. #27

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    Quote Originally Posted by NasalSponge View Post
    I will hive a swarm and then evaluate them for a bit, if they fail to build up then i will combine or re-queen, if they look good, I let them do their thing!
    This is exactly how I treat a swarm. I don't understand requeening a swarm that could be beneficial in offering you some genetic diversity to your apiaries. I set swarm traps up all over my county and a lot of the swarms I catch are from wild unmanaged colonies. Weak colonies don't swarm, stong ones do! Good genetics come from strong colonies!

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Belfast, Ireland
    Posts
    458

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    Quote Originally Posted by baldwinbees View Post
    some swarms are great&some,like the 1 I got last Sat. aren't...they killed their queen the 2nd day I had them
    Might still have a queen though.

    Cast swarms can have more than one queen.
    My brother sieved a swarm through a queen excluder and got several virgins in it.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK USA
    Posts
    2,870

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    If I was having month old hives swarm I would be asking questions this is barely enough time to even get a round of brood laying and hatching done.
    OK, month and a half, the day I pulled the queen cages I went in for foot surgery and had to sit hopelessly for a month while all of my hives swarmed, this one swarmed twice.....the queen was laying wall to wall, top to bottom.

    Just our own personal opinion
    Me too
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,554

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    I've never requeened a swarm. First, if it's a wild one, I want the genetics. Second, if we keep interfering with the bees' ability to detect and replace a queen themselves then we breed bees unable to do so. I want bees who can tell a queen is failing and replace her, not bees that I have to be involved with such things.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  11. #31
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Seneca, sc
    Posts
    830

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    I agree with Michael but, it could be a queen that six weeks ago lived in a treated bee yard in south Georgia. It is because of the unknown that I would replace the queen with know genetics. Genetics that will and have survived in one of my yards. I don't do the whole swarm thing because of this. Protecting what I have is more important to me than free bees. Just my opinion.

  12. #32
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Richmond, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    168

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    I'm with Michael Bush. The primary reason that I get excited about a swarm is the queen and her genetics.

  13. #33
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lincolnton, NC
    Posts
    1,118

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonathan View Post
    My brother sieved a swarm through a queen excluder and got several virgins in it.
    That's a great idea.

  14. #34
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Auburn, Washington, USA
    Posts
    315

    Default Re: Always requeen a captured swarm?

    Fat Beeman just talked about that on his podcast. Nice to get a confirmation from independent sources.

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