My bees keep swarming, I don't know where to put them, or how to best help them make it through the winter & I have no one IRL to help me.
This time last week, I had one colony that I got as a nuc the second week of June.
They swarmed last Thursday (July 31). I had no hive, so DH made me a makeshift nuc box & I put a frame of brood in it as well as a few empty small-cell frames & dumped them in. They've hung around, but it's a very small hive at the moment. I opened it up today to add a few drawn frames & noticed there were a few eggs in there
Today, my original colony swarmed again (I had heard a pipping about 30 minutes before we found the swarm). This time, there were many more bees & I had bought an additional hive (though we still had to rush to get it together), so I was able to pull a frame of honey & a frame of brood out of the original hive & get them set up properly.
My original hive has very few bees left & the amount of brood is dismal. I have been unable to find eggs in it the past two weeks. There are, however 4 or 5 swarm cells in there right now.
So, I'm not sure what I should do in regards to feeding, etc. I have my original hive that looks to be in rough shape. The first swarm, which has very few bees, but eggs & the second swarm, which had a lot of bees & I think they're set up well with a bit of brood and honey.
I'm *attempting* to regress with small-cell frames, but also don't know where to go with that. I have nearly all small-cell frames right now, except the 5 that came with my nuc this spring, which are still all full of brood & now spread between the 3 colonies.
I would also like to be treatment free & was also planning to feed as little as possible. But right now, I think feeding is probably necessary (how?), as I'd like at least one colony to make it through the winter.
Can someone please walk me through what I need to do & answer any additional questions I may have? I'd really appreciate it....I'm feeling like I'm in way over my head at the moment!