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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Newton, GA
    Posts
    21

    Default Collecting swarms with AHB present

    I am new here and new to beekeeping (I will have my first package in a week). I know I may be getting the cart ahead of the horse, but I really think it would be great if I could trap or catch a swarm to potentially start a second hive. However, I have a bit of an issue. I live in one of the two counties in the state of Georgia that have documented presence of Africanized bees (AHB). To my knowledge, AHB were detected in the state about 3 years ago. I have a lot of places that I could hang traps and I feel confident that I will be hearing about swarms. My question is should I mess with them at all given AHB is known to be in the area. I have relatives in TN, so I may be better of to wait on trying to trap until next spring. Thanks much for your advice.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Anthony, New Mexico USA
    Posts
    414

    Default Re: Collecting swarms with AHB present

    AHB is here to stay, so; learn to deal with it.
    Full AHB is hard to manage, but can be done. Do not fear, just wear good armor.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Deming, NM
    Posts
    105

    Default Re: Collecting swarms with AHB present

    Don't let the fact that AHBs are around stop you- just be careful. Never attempt to work feral bees without a full bee suit and smoker. Make sure no one is within about 300 yards when you try to capture/retrieve them. Have a beeyard away from people to place them in.

    Odds are you will see far more EHB than AHB ferals.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,297

    Default Re: Collecting swarms with AHB present

    For the past 20 plus years I've been in the heart of AHB country. I used to try hiving wild swarms around my area - I could rarely keep one hived, even if I gave them open brood. This happened many dozens of times. I haven't tried that recently, but I frequently have wild swarms, from outside my apiary come settle in some of my empty gear. I let them, then kill their queens and replace her with my cultured queen cells - works every time.

    BTW - AHB swarms are about as feisty as a typical EHB established colony. They are not docile like EHB swarms usually are.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Newton, GA
    Posts
    21

    Default Re: Collecting swarms with AHB present

    Thanks for your advice. I think I will build swarm traps today. I had wondered about requeening. I suppose if I thought the swarm was to aggressive, I could just give them a new (bred) queen.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    hinesville ga usa
    Posts
    311

    Default Re: Collecting swarms with AHB present

    Quote Originally Posted by brdmkr View Post
    Thanks for your advice. I think I will build swarm traps today. I had wondered about requeening. I suppose if I thought the swarm was to aggressive, I could just give them a new (bred) queen.
    Welcome to beekeeping, this is my forth year keeping bees. I live about the same distance from the port of savannah that you do. Africanized bees are know to enter the U.S. by ship. I started with purchased bees, but I am having much better survival rates now after catching swarms and doing cut outs. I have even taken several virgin queens to the middle of fort stewart [ 280,000 acres] and left them to mate with feral bees, I would then bring them back and use them for future breeding purposes. I only had one colony from a swarm that was exceptionly aggresive. I moved the hive to another property where it was alone and feed them constantly for a few weeks until they swarmed and the old queen went elsewhere, after a few weeks they calmed down and turned out to be my best producers. Good luck with the bees.

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