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Thread: Possible swarm?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    Griffin, GA USA
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    Default Possible swarm?

    I was out sitting in a chair watching my bees at the feeder, it was 74 today and the wind is about 24mph. This is the first real warm day we've had, but the wind is terrible.... after about 15-20 minutes I look over about 50 ft from my chair and see a dark spot on the ground, I get up and go over to check it out, and it's bees all over the ground.
    I have a swarm trap I bought this winter and some queen scent, I was going to put out, but didn't because of the wind, was going to wait until tomorrow. I looked and didn't see a bee ball, like they were protecting the queen, so I'm not sure what is going on, the only thing I could think of was, it was a swarm and the queen got blown to the ground? Anyway, I set up a deep and put the queen scent in it....there were lots of bees checking it out. I am just going to leave it for awhile and see what happens...
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  2. #2
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    Peace River, AB Canada
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    It may work better to place the hive on the ground with the entrance right on the edge of the bees and place a couple of small sticks or twigs from the bees to the landing board. They crawl up and into the box.

  3. #3
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    Dec 2012
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    Pickens County, South Carolina, US
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    Very interesting. I am subscribing to the thread and I hope you report back what happens.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    Thanks JD's Bees! It worked! I just went down there and they are a steady stream of bees going up the stick into the hive. You can even see the stream moving forward from the back of the circle. I got some pics I'll put up later, I just fired up the grill for some burgers. It's cool as heck watching them marching forward, slowly, steadily.....

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    Here are a couple pics of the bees going in the hive across a stick.... I just checked and it is almost dark, there is still a small circle of bees about as big as a paper plate. They have huddled up, 2 or 3 deep as if they have decided to spend the night outside...all the other bees are in the hive, except about 40 on the front porch of the hive and a few crawling around on the ground.
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    It's pretty cool watching the bees march right in!

    Wonder why they were on the ground, though.

    Peter

  7. #7
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    Mar 2013
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    Hampton, SC, USA
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    Did your queen have her wings clipped? If they cannot fly the swarm may stay on the ground.

  8. #8
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    way to go bw61. that's one of the cooler things to watch bees do, plus you've captured a colony of bees!

    your chances of keeping them are better if you leave them there for now, and put a frame of brood in with them if you have it.

    give them the day to anchor to that brood, and then move them to anywhere you like.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    Quote Originally Posted by BuckH View Post
    Did your queen have her wings clipped? If they cannot fly the swarm may stay on the ground.
    No, my queen isn't clipped and these aren't from my hive....I know there are at least 4 wild hives in the area, well 2 wild, one from mine swarming last March, and one that absconded from beetle infestation last July.

    Thanks squarepeg....I am sure there are brood in my other hive, was gonna check on them today anyways....Also puzzles me as to why I didn't see a ball of bees in the whole bunch, like protecting a queen? Don't suppose it could be a swarm that lost the queen? If so, maybe they can start one from the frame of brood....

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    it is puzzling alright bw.

    if you give them a frame with some empty comb on it, i would expect that you would see eggs being laid in a day or two if they have a queen.

    if you make sure there are some eggs on that frame of brood you give them, it will have queen cells on it in a week if they have no queen.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  11. #11
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    KC, MO, USA
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    Are there any trees that they could have fallen from? What was your night time temp? Could have chilled and fell out of a tree.

    Good Job
    Good pictures

  12. #12
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    Griffin, GA USA
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    thanks...my first catch! oh yeah, there are trees all around...in fact they were probably under the limbs of some big pines...I wonder if the wind knocked the queen down and the bees just stayed with her....wind was at 24-30 mph Sat. They seem to have adapted to their new home quickly. I put a jar of syrup on top of the hive yesterday and they have been feeding on it all day today.... our night temps have been varying wildly, fronts coming through...from 40's to 50's. It was 50 Sat. night, good thing a small cluster that didn't go in the hive, stayed out on the ground until the next morning. We have another front coming through now...tornado watch until 10pm, wind 10-15 now, 10-25 tonight and rain coming... I worry about the wind. In 2010 when I got my first hive, I picked up my bees at the post office, installed them, then later that night we had severe weather, tornadoes everywhere, one touched down just a few miles away. I just knew after hearing the wind howling at 30-40 mph at 3am, I was going to get up and find my hive scattered, but it wasn't.

  13. #13
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    Default Re: Possible swarm?

    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

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