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Thread: New Swarm

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Lower Lake, California, USA
    Posts
    173

    Default New Swarm

    I had a swarm show up on the ground today about 2 pm & I boxed them in a 5 frame nuc with lemon grass oil . About two hours later it looked like more bees kept coming & I found a queen beside the nuc. I got her to run inside & by dark everyone seams to be inside.

    Nuc is on the ground & I plan on raising it tomorrow. Should I add an second nuc (I have both deep & Medium) with a frame of brood & stores to anchor them? Or just let them go?

    More about this swarm at the end of my "why did they die" post.

    Please ask away I think I over researched this Beekeeping.
    Six months classes
    two gigs internet videos
    Bought & red
    Beekeeping for Dummies
    The Backyard Beekeeper (prints small)
    The new Starting Right with bees
    Grit's 'Guide to Back Yard Bees & Honey'
    The ABC & XYZ of Bee Culture 41st Edition (like reading a dictionary of what you like only)
    The Practical Beekeeper volume 1,2 & 3

    Could not find anything about swarming on the ground nor it seeming that two swarms came to the same place!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Davie, Florida, USA
    Posts
    793

    Default Re: New Swarm

    nobull...I read your prior (dying) post as well, and agree with others...it sure looks like a pesticide incident. Is your queen clipped? Or perhaps she too is ill, and was trying to abscond to save her colony? (abandon the hive completely?)

    For what it is worth (which isn't much), if they were my bees, I would raise that Nuc now. (It's still early in CA...lol) Never had a swarm stay that I left on the ground for 'tomorrow'. It won't take long, after dark is the perfect time to move GENTLY, and the bees will appreciate orienting to a raised hive when day breaks, JMO. Plus with the other dead bees on the ground (reason for death unknown), I would want to increase the distance of the Nuc from them. I hope the dying is done! Watch to make sure you don't see any bees coming out of any of your hives like crashing helicopters. Always very sad to see!

    A frame of brood may definitely help the swarm stay, but make sure there is no pesticide clues in the donor hive, or you may compound your problem. Keep us posted! I sure hope I am wrong about pesticides... Good luck!
    Last edited by Bees In Miami; 08-20-2013 at 11:41 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Lower Lake, California, USA
    Posts
    173

    Default Re: New Swarm

    Thanks, it's a idea I've not given much thought about due to us being so far from any 'Farmers'. But every idea helps & I'll look at ways to test this idea. Queen not clipped & looked healthy. I don't think she is from my hives, the swarm came from the woods where I've been trying to find a wild hive that swarms every two years (due this year, but norm in spring).

    BTW no additional dead bees. Going out now to raise the nuc!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Davie, Florida, USA
    Posts
    793

    Default Re: New Swarm

    nobull...Just wondering how things have gone since your bee deaths find. Are your hives doing ok? Did the swarm stick around?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Lower Lake, California, USA
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    173

    Default Re: New Swarm

    Welllllll, everybody's alive but I'm sure scratching my head!

    To stay with this post the swarm seems to have stuck in the nuc. I did move the nuc about 30 or 40 feet from the other hives and raised it up about two and one half feet.

    As for everybody else, I've had two after swarms (?) About the size of a small tennis ball. One was right in front of the nuc and I thought the Queen may have came out so I put that mini swarm in the nuc the next day, which was yesterday. Tonight another mini swarm so I went through every frame of the cut out which had frames of eggs added. I could not find a Queen nor could I find anything but one open empty short Queen cell. So guess where tonight's mini swarm went? It did have a nice big Queen with it!

    As for the die off, what I think is this hive (#1 hive) is crowded and because it's so hot in the day the bees bearded under the bottom screen. I think it got a little cold and they could not cluster up in the hive because they were outside the bottom board screen. The reason I think this is because all them little bee bodies were gone by the time I got home from work. I now don't think they were dead I think they were chilled! Later in the day they got warm woke up and went in the hive, told everybody we need to start making a whole bunch of swarms and teach this guy something about bees!!!!

    Tomorrow I'm playing hooky-bee from work and I'm going to tear down hive one and two looking for Queens, Queen cells, brood space and anything else I can learn about! If I have a lot of capped brood (I'll be going through four deep brood boxes) then I'll add some brood to the cut out to move the five medium cut out frames up to a medium and fill the eight frame deep.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Lower Lake, California, USA
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    173

    Default Re: New Swarm

    Everybody keep your eyes out they left!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Lower Lake, California, USA
    Posts
    173

    Default Re: New Swarm

    Bumping this thread with new information.

    I did a tear down an inspection on August 24 and posted a bee yard report. I reported some open swarm cells but I was very puzzled about the large number bees in all my hives.

    Today I found out that my neighbor contracted with a migratory beekeeper and on the 20th they moved 100 hives onto the 10 acres next to ours. Both are properties are wood and brush hillsides so neither of us knew of the hives on our respective property. The migratory beekeeper made no effort to water his bees and after pulling thousands of bees out of the swimming pool and an additional neighbor complaining about all the bees grounded in his watering troughs my beliefs neighbor evicted commercial 100 hives. He tells me that in the five days they were on his property close to a dozen swarms spun off.

    So I now think the late swarm activity came from the migratory hives.

    My question now is what should I do to sterilize or clean the nuc that they were in for the one-day? Or should I even bother?

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