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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
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    4,113

    Default Make a hive swarm for demonstration?

    Our club is about to start weekly (more or less) apiary sessions, and it occurred to me that it might be instructive to intentionally cause a hive to swarm by feeding and restricting it's space. Only where it won't bother anyone of course. I wonder if a colony as small as 3-5 medium frames will swarm and requeen in the regular way? Never tried it.
    Since '09-25H-T-Z6b

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    carney, maryland, USA
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    593

    Default Re: Make a hive swarm for demonstration?

    That might be neat, particularly if you had some baited swarm boxes strategically placed and were able to "catch" the swarm. Then you could follow the progress of the "feral" colony vs. the mother.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    9,788

    Default Re: Make a hive swarm for demonstration?

    Quote Originally Posted by David LaFerney View Post
    I wonder if a colony as small as 3-5 medium frames will swarm and requeen in the regular way?
    Isn't that the normal risk if you don't stay ahead of a 5 frame nuc?
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Athens, OH
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    2,721

    Default Re: Make a hive swarm for demonstration?

    It would be tough to get them to swarm on schedule.
    Go to Heaven for the climate, go to Hell for the company. -Mark Twain

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    27,629

    Default Re: Make a hive swarm for demonstration?

    That's what I was thinking. Whereas one can make an artificial swarm if you wish to demonstrate how to handle a swarm.
    Mark Berninghausen To combat Ebola, please consider supporting http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,341

    Default Re: Make a hive swarm for demonstration?

    Shake a lot of nurse bees into a package box and cage one queen. Wait two hours. Put the queen in the box overnight. Do this the night before. The next day, hang the queen cage in the tree and they will cluster around the queen. They will stay because the queen can't go with them. You can hive like a normal swarm except where you have to take the cage down and put it into the hive...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
    Posts
    4,113

    Default Re: Make a hive swarm for demonstration?

    I'm not really talking about getting them to swarm on schedule, just to crowd them and overfeed them while doing weekly inspections so that the students can see the results - backfilling, swarm cells, what a hive that has swarmed looks like... Catching the swarm would be cool, but an awful lot to hope for. That's why I was wondering what would be the smallest hive that would be likely to swarm and successfully requeen. I have heard of mini nucs that just abscond because they are so small.

    Michael Bush - great idea. I've never heard of that before. Thanks.
    Since '09-25H-T-Z6b

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