Yesterday, 3/20/2019, Birmingham, AL.
Yesterday, 3/20/2019, Birmingham, AL.
Jefferson CO. 35216
Saw one of my hive swarming, or so I though. They landed 30 feet up in a magnolia tree.
When I went down the path between my hive and the magnolia tree I heard a small roar behind me. I turned to look and there was a calm swarm 2-3 feet off the ground in a gardenia bush.
Lifting the branch, I slide a deep and medium (with old comb in it) under them, then lowered the branch so the swarm was in contact with the old comb. They moved right in.
The one in the tree may have been part of this swarm because they dispersed and a lot of bees were flying around the box I had just placed under the swarm.
The gardenia bush is right next to my hives. They had been there long enough to build a little comb. The ones in the magnolia tree may have been these bees about to move on.
Considering the location in my gardenia bush I'm sure they were my bees.
So I've had 2 or 3 of my hives swarm in the past 2 weeks and I've caught two of them.
There may have been a 4th one because the guy next door said he saw a swarm of bees over the creek near the road between our houses during last week. But he also thought he had a swarm in his attic which turned out to be 3 to 5 scout bees and a couple that come in his bathroom through the vent.
looks like the swarm that I saw yesterday, actually swarming around and pouring out of my hive (P1), and then dissipated while I was collection the swarm in the gardenia bush, was a practice swarm.
Today they swarmed around like yesterday but have now settled back on the front of the hive.
Which begs the question, at what point is it too late to do swarm prevention? could I have checker boarded them yesterday for example and they would have been happy?
and in the time it's taken to type this up they've all gone back in
Once the bees have decided to swarm, there is almost nothing you can do to stop them. What you can do is make an artificial swarm right then. Grab the queen and shake a bunch of bees into a hive with a drawn frame or two and move them across the yard. Go back into the original hive and get rid of all but two of the swarm cells, or make a few nucs wirh the other cells and leave the original hive with only three or four frames of bees. Most of the foragers will return anyhow so bee aggressive.
Vestavia Hills, Al
Small swarm in a new trap in new location in may yard.
I thought for sure I had them ,then no, then yes, then maybe, then looked pretty definitive on the 12th when I saw a drone and a hive beetle fly in.
checked inside today and yep, small swarm.
foot note... this trap started off in mid March with a plastic top and inner cover which was all I had at the time. I bought them just to check it out.
Anyway, there was a scout or two but it wasn't until I replaced the plastic top and inner cover with wood did they really get interested. I think it was too bright inside.
Neighbor posted on Nextdoor about a swarm yesterday. I went and gathered them up today. Oddly they were on the ground in the street -- yard folks had been pulling out a bunch of bamboo from behind the house and they were on the ground next to the pile. He put a mail carrier box over them yesterday evening (it was pretty cold last night, and storms the night before) and thought they'd left, but when he checked today they were still there. So -- I baited a cardboard box with lgo, scooped up the queen and put her in there, and then ran off to a previously made appointment. Came back 1.5 hours later and they'd all moved to my box! Taped them up with the help of my almost 3 year old (she sat in the car and cut tape mostly) around sunset, and installed them in a deep with an interior jar feeder. This is a pretty tiny swarm and may not make it -- but I did see the queen, so that's good. Does being on the ground mean that she can't fly / is old?
Update. Left the hive, are on the ground in front of it, 10 feet down. (Hive on the porch, ball of bees off the porch.) Thought maybe I overdid it with the lgo in the cardboard box, so I put the box down next to the ball of bees on the ground and hopefully they'll crawl in. I'm feeling more and more that something's off with this swarm. . . .
First "known" swarm in our area was in Dothan from member of our bee club hives which he caught on Wednesday March 4, 2020. Second was yesterday by a friend in Newville area also caught and from one of his hives. First from my hives in Ozark was today March 17th. Pitched 40 to 45 feet up in large oak near my hives. Unless they settle in one of my swarm traps all I can do is wave bye to them.
Covington County, Alabama
Caught a swarm issuing on video on February 29, 2020. I was already doing splits, so I broke into the hive to harvest swarm cells. I found the new queen emerging from her cell. Caught a little of that on video too.
I cough my own swarm a couple of days ago
and FYI, in my area, the flow is on and I plan to add suppers this afternoon.
Cough another of my own.
Caught a swarm in one of my swarm traps this afternoon that was sitting here at the house waiting to be put out.
Say to go there!!! Decatur, and Cullman hives.