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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Augusta, Georgia, USA

    Default bearding question

    I have a hive that is very populated and was very aggressive. So I decided it needed to be requeened. I split the hive in two (it's a double deep). I left one of the deeps in the original location so it would collect the foragers back. The other deep I moved to a different spot (this deep contains most of the brood). I found the original queen and removed her, and 24 hours later introduced two new queens, one in each deep. Today I am noticing a lot of bearding on the hive that is in the original location. It is very warm today (83 degrees). but I don't see any fanning going on....just a lot of bees clumped on the landing board and above the entrance. Any theories as to why this would be going on? Is is just because the hive is too warm? None of my other hives are bearding really at all today. One theory I have is that because most of the brood is gone from the hive that these may be nurse bees with nothing to do so they are hanging out in the front.

    I should mention too that this hive was preparing to swarm and had multiple queen cells built before I split it. Could these bees still be thinking it's time to swarm but are not able to without a queen?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Pinehurst, North Carolina, USA

    Default Re: bearding question

    If both halves of the split are in the same general area (2 mile radius) you could be experiencing some drifting back to the original hive location. Assuming that it's just one deep on both new colonies they could be over crowded in the original hive. Make sure they don't need more room.
    ...This, and my heart, and all the Bees
    Which in the Clover dwell.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA

    Default Re: bearding question

    Has the weather been warm? Are they crowded? Bearding is like sweating, it's what they do when they are hot and/or crowded. Since crowding can lead to swarming and it also leads to bearding there is a casual, relationship here. In other words bearding MAY indicate a condition (overcrowding as opposed to heat) which MAY lead to swarming, but bearding is a normal occurrence on a hot day even in a hive that is overcrowded.
    Michael Bush "Everything works if you let it." 42y 40h 39yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Williston, NC, USA

    Default Re: bearding question

    I hate to sound like a broken records, but slatted racks! I can't praise them enough. Since I started using them about four years ago I never see any bearding! The girls just seem to love them. On a 100-degree day, I'll look thru the entrance and they'll all be inside hanging off the slats!


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