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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    SNOW SHOE PA USA
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    1,212

    Default S-P-M what do you do?

    S-P-M= swarm prevention management.
    What your plans?
    I know i have to have some game plan this spring i had 8 swarms last year and i don't want another repeat of that .
    I did nothing for S-P-M but i cought all 8 so 8 new hives but not much honey.
    So any ideas or methods would be great for guy that need to keep there bees home.
    Thank you .
    Say hello to the bad guy!
    year five==== 31 hives==== T{OAV}

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Camas, WA
    Posts
    1,933

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    I suspect that every area will be slightly different. My goal is that by May 15-June 1 when my honey supers go on that I have strong hives that won't swarm. I start in our mid-spring by equalizing hives. I bring nuc's through winter and use them as a place to move excess brood. So I look through hives every 2-3 weeks and move brood from hives that I think are too strong for the time of year. It does take experience to know what they should look like for the time of year in your area.

    If a hive looks determined to swarm, I take the queen and three frames of bees (basically I swarm for them with the amount of bees that I want) and brood and make a nuc, allowing the original hive to make their own queen. When I put supers on, I don't go through my hives until they come off unless something seems wrong. That's the short answer.
    Last edited by beedeetee; 01-10-2013 at 08:29 AM. Reason: Clarify

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Weeki Wachee, Florida,USA
    Posts
    1,947

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    I run singles with an excluder as do many in Florida. The hives can really explode in a short time when the flow hits.
    I'm going to try a couple things not just to prevent swarms but to measure the effectiveness and grow.
    * I'll pull a few cut down splits from hives as soon as they go into oranges if the flow is strong and the hives are "thick" with brood. I'll bring a few of my proven queens home to put into drone production and place queen cells into hives letting those queens mate with local commercial stuff. After flow I'll put those open mated hives in a yard to evaluate. Maybe I'll get something good.
    * I will run a couple open brood nest hives with 10 frames built out and mixed in with 10 frames comb and bare foundation. Maybe I can get a third box on them before end of flow. I never have enough comb and queens seems to put brood everywhere here if not restricted so maybe these hives will get made into Nucs? There is something to learn here I'm just not sure what.
    *Mostly I'll keep an eye on singles and try to keep the broodnest open. I'll remove all or most of the capped honey only frames in brood nest and replace with comb if I can do it just as the flow is on. I'll also move a fair amount (3-4 frames) of brood above the excluder a couple weeks into the flow and move it back down before the end of the flow. Lots of manipulation but I'm short on drawn comb!
    * I'm also going to try to keep a couple swarm traps everywhere I keep hives. I can't catch a swarm to save my life and it might be nice to check that off the list.

    The bees keep trying to teach me hopefully I can learn something this year and my lessons won't hurt too much!

    Just my ideas very little practical experience.
    Does anyone want to offer advice?
    What lessons do you think I'll learn from this?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    4,368

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    i've never run all deeps, but talked with folks who have.

    if i was running all deeps, i would try putting a queen excluder above the first deep, and about every two weeks i would move frames of capped brood from the bottom deep up above the excluder, and replace those with empty frames of comb from with the brood has already emerged.

    the idea is to keep the broodnest open and always make sure the queen has room to lay.

    since i use a single deep with medium supers, and have enough drawn comb now, i'll be using walt wright's nectar management method by checkerboarding the supers. i am already seeing some brooding starting up here, and we should have the first blooms in a month or so. i'll try to have the checkerboarded supers in place before things ramp up too much.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    YANCEY CO., NC
    Posts
    639

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Starting the last week of Febuary I'll start taking the bottom meduim hivebody and putting it on top and do this everytwo weeks untill 1st week of April and open the broodnest.check back in two weeks and if I see queen cells break down hive into three seperate hives.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
    Posts
    2,652

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Squarepeg wrote:

    if i was running all deeps, i would try putting a queen excluder above the first deep, and about every two weeks i would move frames of capped brood from the bottom deep up above the excluder, and replace those with empty frames of comb from with the brood has already emerged.

    the idea is to keep the broodnest open and always make sure the queen has room to lay.


    Been doing it that way since at least the 40's.

    Crazy Roland

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    4,368

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    only one swarm last year if i remember correctly roland, out of how many hives?
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    SNOW SHOE PA USA
    Posts
    1,212

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    In this video fat/beeman puts blank frames in every other spot in in to two deeps and the frames are blank no comb.
    Kinda like checker boarding but i'm guessing it's his way . Fat/beeman has been a beekeeper for 60 years so i'm sure i'm going to give it a try.
    He's got great tubes if your a new beekeeper watch them it helps.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0XABXPyQ2rg
    Say hello to the bad guy!
    year five==== 31 hives==== T{OAV}

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Belpre,Ohio, USA
    Posts
    1,272

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Glock,
    I failed miserably with swarm prevention last year and my hive issued 5 swarms, caught 4 of them. I ended up with 6 double deep hives by years end. I have no extra drawn comb with which to work so my plan for this year is:

    1. Use Rolands method starting in March and on through April
    2. May 1, flow starts, move the excluder above the 2nd deep, add a third deep to each hive, combine/checkerboard drawn comb and foundationless frames into the 2nd and 3rd deeps.

    I should end the season with a deep of drawn comb with capped honey per hive, when extracted I will have an extra deep of drawn comb per hive for next year when I can begin getting my shallows and mediums drawn out and filled.

    Oh by the way I purchased one of those Olympus DP201 recorders per your suggestion, this should make keeping records of hive inspections much easier, thanks for your advice.
    Last edited by WWW; 01-11-2013 at 07:37 AM. Reason: corrections
    Bill...in Southeast Ohio

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    9,227

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    I think you have three options:
    Reversals, Checkboarding, and Splits.

    Then pile on supers.
    To the best of my knowledge I have never had a hive swarm so I am wondering if those that have have genetics in their bees that incline them to swarm more so then mine do. If this is the case what I do may not work for you.

    A crystal ball would be nice to know what the bees are thinking...
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    4,368

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    >A crystal ball would be nice to know what the bees are thinking...

    i'll be extra vigilent during prime swarm season, which for here is mid march through april.

    looking for expansion or reduction of the broodnest would be the closest thing to a crystal ball.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    Utica, NY
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    9,227

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by squarepeg View Post
    reduction of the broodnest would be the closest thing to a crystal ball.
    I believe Walt says that is too late, they already got it in their heads.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    4,368

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    I believe Walt says that is too late, they already got it in their heads.
    and i believe walt is correct on that ace.

    if your nectar management and/or brood nest management did not prevent swarming,

    you at least have the opportunity at that point to artificially swarm them via a cut down split.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,797

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Mostly I keep the brood nest open and make sure they don't run out of room otherwise:
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesswarmcontrol.htm
    and sometimes I just split them...
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beessplits.htm#swarmcontrol
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
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    9,227

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by squarepeg View Post
    and i believe walt is correct on that ace.

    you at least have the opportunity at that point to artificially swarm them via a cut down split.
    He, he, yeah I think I know about splitting in a panic. But only having about 3 seasons of experience last year was nothing like I ever saw in a colony before. Was it something I did previously, or was it something they do? I have no clue until it happens again if it ever does.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    1,146

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Last year I did the same thing fat beeman did in his video then I split the hive, some 50/50 some 33/33/33. All the hives had swarm cells (getting ready to swarm), made sure all the splits had a few of them. I thought it might be possible that the splits with the queen could swarm. But at least the split was smaller so they would not take as many bees and honey away. I did not see a population decrease that would indicate any swarmed.

    This year I am hoping for honey and drawn comb. I am going to try cut down splits.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
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    2,652

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Squarepeg asked:

    only one swarm last year if i remember correctly roland, out of how many hives?

    Between 300 and 400, depends what day you ask. I can not say there was only one swarm, we can only be in one spot at a time, but with our record keeping, there is no reason to believe there where a significant number of swarms.

    Ace, I believe we do not use either of the three methods listed by you.

    Crazy Roland

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Livermore, CA
    Posts
    1,383

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    What about keeping them "weak" through swarm season and then combining during the the flow making sure they are supered properly?

    I plan on splitting this year and building a surplus of drawn comb, so I may be able to alleviate swarming. I only had one hive swarm last year, it was a very strong double deep nuc that I installed into a 10 frame deep and then added another ten frame deep of foundationless which they drew out extra fast, ran out of room and spawned a large swarm.

    I think my swarm prevention method is just going to be mad splitting, and then combine hives for the flow.

    Anyone have an opinion on this?
    Coyote Creek Bees

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
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    9,227

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by Roland View Post
    Ace, I believe we do not use either of the three methods listed by you.
    Crazy Roland
    OK spit it out what is the fourth method?
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
    Posts
    2,652

    Default Re: S-P-M what do you do?

    We run a single deep brood chamber, deep supers, and keep the brood chamber clear by hanging up brood so the queen can lay.

    Crazy Roland

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