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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Topanga, California, USA
    Posts
    10

    Default Capturing a colony

    Hi, I put out an empty super in the forest at 9000' ele. After doing a removal in the valley at 4000'
    I've nervier seen honey bees up here but they have been attracted to my box and tools so I decided to encourage them to feed and hang out hoping I can capture some alpine honey bees, so I've been putting honey and sugar water and have created quite a feeding frenzy and at night they are all gone.
    My question is how can I get them to stay, I'm sure they are in a tree somewhere I see the direction they are coming from but no luck in finding there hive. I'm not even sure they can survive the winter up here snow is 20' deep or more here in the Hi Sierra, ide like to save them and take them down to a warmer climate in the valley this winter.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,557

    Default Re: Capturing a colony

    Someone besides you might have a beehive or bee yard up in the area, in which case these are not wild Alpine Bees. And, if they are wild Alpine Bees then I'm sure they don't need anyone to save them. However, if you do want to catch them or see where they are coming from, then grab your sugar water hive trap and follow them as far as you can make them out. Then set it down and watch some more, and then follow some more. Keep doing it until you find where they are coming from. I doubt that this time of year they will be throwing a swarm, but if you find them wild in a tree or wherever, then leave a hive trap or two in the area and maybe you'll be able to catch a swarm off of them in the spring. Good luck and enjoy the high mountains while you are up there!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Topanga, California, USA
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Capturing a colony

    That's a great idea! I'll try first thing in the morning.
    Thanks and ill post what I've discovered,

    It really is nice up here, enjoying.

    Thanks again, Ray

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Midland, MI
    Posts
    573

    Default Re: Capturing a colony

    another thing to do is plot the line of their flight on a map. then move the feeder a goodly distance off of the line of flight you have plotted. When you observe the new line of flight and plot it, the intersection of the two lines should be at the hive. a third set-up and plotting is a good idea and it should get you pretty close to the bee tree.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Alachua County, FL, USA
    Posts
    6,793

    Default Re: Capturing a colony

    Welcome!
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Topanga, California, USA
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Capturing a colony

    Well.. I did just that, thanks for the advise. Moved the box closer in the direction they are flying and triangulated by putting a feeder at a far off point, and got a position. The hard part was finding the tree they were in. I looked for days and in different lighting conditions and finally found them zipping in and out of a small dead Red Fir, about 50' up in a crutch just below where the conifer splits sending 2 spires up. There seems to be a small hole where they come and go but this is in a west facing position and it is exposed to ferocious west winds and zero temps, the day before yesterday we had a low of 18 today it's 44 and they are flying and feeding at the sugar syrup I've been putting out. At first they seemed to be bright itiallian stock and I noticed some blackish ones, now that it is colder they all seem to be of the blackish variety, I'm sure they are all coming from the same tree, can two varieties coexist?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Amarillo, Tx
    Posts
    143

    Default Re: Capturing a colony

    From what I have read, I think the queen can lay eggs for multiple varieties. Of course, half the genetics will belong to the queen. But, the other half can be any breed that the queen mated with. During her mating flight the queen will mate with several different drones and save the sperm in a special organ. I haven't read anything about the birth order (whether or not she uses up all of one kind of sperm before using the next drone's sperm).
    Zone 6b; Elv.3,600 ft.(1,097m); AA Rain 20.36 in. (51.72 cm)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,557

    Default Re: Capturing a colony

    Great job Trimblebee,
    It sounds like you are having a great fun adventure. Yes, two colors of bees can be in the same hive, as the queen has mated with an average of 20 drones, and the drones aren't always the same color. Hopefully you get a swarm or two from it this coming spring.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    5,690

    Default Re: Capturing a colony

    > I haven't read anything about the birth order (whether or not she uses up all of one kind of sperm before using the next drone's sperm).

    You may be interested in this study titled, "Does Patriline Composition Change over a Honeybee Queen's Lifetime?":

    http://www.mdpi.com/2075-4450/3/3/857/pdf
    (At least with my Chrome browser, I have to download the PDF to be able to read it. I'm not sure why.)

    .
    Last edited by Rader Sidetrack; 09-29-2013 at 09:14 PM. Reason: fix title
    Graham
    --- Victor Hugo - "Common sense is in spite of, not the result of, education.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Amarillo, Tx
    Posts
    143

    Default Re: Capturing a colony

    Thanks for the article. It still looked like a non-uniform mixture in the beginning that approached uniformity as time went on.
    Zone 6b; Elv.3,600 ft.(1,097m); AA Rain 20.36 in. (51.72 cm)

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