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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Sunrise Beach Mo
    Posts
    5

    Default Question: Forcing feral colony to Swarm

    Feral colony for sure has been in a Portico since 1998, Homeowner will only allow me to capture swarms.

    Any thoughts on how to force them to swarm?

    I hear pollen substitutes produce short lived bees, but wouldn't the Queen bee still be excellent stock?

    I am in the process of regressing my bees

    Thank you Jeff

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    151

    Default Re: Question: Forcing feral colony to Swarm

    Swarming is a natural event that is next to impossible to force in a feral colony. Not all colonies swarm and can/will survive(actually just persist) without ever swarming. They just exist. Are you sure this colony hasnt swarmed? I would put a swarm trap 50-100 yds away and see what happens.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Stillwell, KS
    Posts
    647

    Default Re: Question: Forcing feral colony to Swarm

    Ha, do women need to be taught how to shop, no force needed they will swarm on their own.

    Trick is knowing when they are swarming and getting there to catch them in time.

    When I find a new feral colony I give homeowners and neighbors a one page flyer that show them a couple pictures of what swarms looks like, describes when they are likely to occur, where to look, and has my phone number to call me when they see one. Works like a charm, I catch 20+ swarms a year without even trying hard.

    Don

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Norfolk, VA
    Posts
    166

    Default Re: Question: Forcing feral colony to Swarm

    Feed syrup and/or pollen causing them to expand = swarm

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    1,528

    Default Re: Question: Forcing feral colony to Swarm

    Hogan trap em or put out a good bait hive in spring.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,217

    Default Re: Question: Forcing feral colony to Swarm

    Put out a bait hive or two. Feed a lot of syrup early in the spring.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Sunrise Beach Mo
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Question: Forcing feral colony to Swarm

    Thank you all for advice & support.

    last spring i put out 1 deep with 5 frames, will try many more this spring, 2 1/2hr drive to Joplin Mo area, will check into getting house owner to feed sugar syrup, he had bees in the past.

    supposedly this hive has been active in portico since the 1940. ( I ? that) but I do know there has been activity on warm winter days since 1998

    Once again Thank you

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Encino,California,USA
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: Question: Forcing feral colony to Swarm

    The bees are in swarm mode in Southern California. I'm in a neighborhood in the San Fernando Valley (Near Los Angeles) and my piece of suburbia is loaded with feral hives. I have trapped many over the years here.

    I left out my extracting equipment last month and the ferals were all over it. I bee lined a few and realized there was a monster feral hive two houses away. Last Saturday I noticed a few sniffing around equipment i was renovating, so Sunday I put out a bait hive. On Monday it was full. There is no way to prove it, but I think feeding all that honey gave them the bump they needed to skeedadle.....

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