Yesterday, 23Feb09, I was out watching the traffic at the entrances to my hives, when I noticed a swarm was arriving from the Northwest - from beyond my own apiaries and clustering on the back of a hive. It was a modest size swarm, enough bees to cover five medium frames in the empty nuc I hived them in. What was best about the bees in this swarm - they were golden, Cordovan Italians, lots of all-golden drones, about 80% golden Cordovan workers, but I haven't spotted the queen yet. Later today, just before dark, I plan to check on them to locate their queen. If they are even still in the nuc it will be the first swarm I've managed to "hive" in the past eight years.
I guess those dozen or so Cordovan queens I had been raising a few years ago and attempting to get mated in mini-mating nucs may have become viable colonies. They all had absconded from those nucs, with their bees, on their mating flights. This was my first sign that any of them had survived. A very pleasant surprise.
Yaaah! I just came in from checking the queen in my newly hived swarm, not only is she a young Cordovan-Italian, but the swarm hasn't abandoned the nuc.
Fortunately, even if she's only mated with wild-type drones (drones other than Cordovan drones), all her drones will be pure Cordovan-Italian and she can be a good drone source, and her workers and queens will carry one of the genes for Cordovan.
Yesterday I discovered a small swarm, the size of a large grapefruit, on the branch of the large Mesquite tree that shades my Nuc yard. It was at six feet, on the branch where the branch rested on the six foot high, light tan shade cloth that helps reduce infiltration of sunlight and winds to the yard. I put a frame heavy with honey, but also containing some pollen and a few dozen cells of sealed worker brood, into a Nuc box, then held the nuc box beneath the swarm and knocked them into the box. I then put a cover on and set them on my Nuc stands next to other Nucs.
The swarm was not from any of my own hives. There were many drones in the swarm, several different color combinations, none of the variously colored drones in the swarm looked like any of the drones from any of my own hives. They also behaved more defensive than any swarm should be. I was stung in the nostrils and on my scalp several times by the stragglers that didn't fall into the Nuc box. And they only stayed in the box for about twenty minutes. After twenty minutes they moved over about twenty-five feet, and into another Nuc box, in a stack of Nuc boxes filled with empty comb.
Yesterday (11Oct56) I was standing in my apiary, putting pollen substitute patties on my hives, when a swarm coming from somewhere West of our property, flew over my apiary and landed ten feet East on one of my peach trees. It was a fairly small swarm, enough bees to cover four medium depth frames, once I shook them into an empty five-frame nuc box. I noticed they were accompanied by a dark virgin/recently mated queen. Of course I will need to replace her as soon as practical.
All plans, of course, will depend on the swarm actually remaining in my equipment, this rarely happens except they install themselves. Sometime later this morning I will check on them to see if they are still there.
Had a 2 super hive with frames only in top box and used lemon grass oil as lure. Hive set up in front yard. Large swarm darkened the sky as they came in and landed on the hive and proceeded to move in.
Had a 2 super hive with frames only in top box and used lemon grass oil as lure. Hive set up in front yard. Large swarm darkened the sky as they came in and landed on the hive and then proceeded to move in.
As I entered my nuc apiary I noticed a small size swarm clustered on a low branch of the mesquite tree that shades this small apiary. The day before I had assembled a nuc that was still queenless, without a queen cell, so I placed it on a ladder which positioned it just a few inches below the swarm. I removed the cover from the nuc and gently pushed the swarm off the branch and into the nuc using a long wooden shim.
After they settle in, I plan to check them out to see if they have a queen, else I'll need to give them a cultured cell.
Started out with 2 hives three months ago. Lost one to Wax Moths three weeks ago and my second swarmed yesterday. I caught it yesterday and was able to "coax" it back into the hive but my wife called me today at work (8-26) and said it just swarmed again. I'll try again in the spring.
I am in central Tucson, AZ where the weather has been 80's to low 90's, of course not much rain/humidity to say the least. Have had 4 swarms on large garden property in the past week! Hived one, other 3 moved on. 4/23/13
A swarm flew over me, about three weeks ago (approximately, 30 Jan 2014) . Just yesterday (22 Feb 2014) a swarm tried to take over my queenless cell builder colony, but I managed to divert them into an empty nuc with empty combs (they were still there, today).
A week ago, when visiting another beekeeper, about 18 miles, south of my location, we examined a few of his yards. He had not harvested any honey, 2013-2014, and most of his colonies still had capped honey from the summer of 2013, were not fed, anything, were strong and growing. I was there to harvest a few combs, each, from his strongest colonies - splits I could use, however I wished. He offered this, saying he owed me a favor. Who was I to argue. I'm sure some of them were getting ready to swarm, perhaps our split making may have slowed that process a bit.
This area has a very dry spring, winter and fall. Around 4th of july we have a real Monsoon season until around Sept 1st. Really. Otherwise this is high desert/plains. Late rain late buildup and swarming every year. 1 swarm late june, very small. 4 swarms in the last 10 days, & only 7 lures out. 2 at least are large primary swarms, the old queen type. Late, but a good year so far. Most areas are done by now, here its just into peak swarm time. Placing about 20 lures this week. I love feral bees!
Was working in the garden picking arugula seeds when a small swarm buzzed right over me headed south - close enough that I ducked! Didn't have my glasses on so don't know which way they ultimately went.
I checked on my girls and everything seemed normal, but, they could still have come from my hive. Or, they may have come from one of the several neighbors who have bees. A check this weekend will hopefully tell.
Location: Yavapai County, Arizona
date when the bees swarmed or when you found the swarm.
comments - example: if the swarm came from your hive, or if you were called to pick up a swarm, how long was it there. This is not for cutouts unless the bees just took up residence and are not established. It would also be great to include a small photo of the swarm.
Glendale, Arizona 85301 March 25, 2017
Caught swarm with swarm trap nuc 8 ft. up in Mondale pine tree. Left it to get established for 5 days and transferred it by truck to Camp Verde 86322. ON Saturday April 1 it was hived and a large caramel colored Italian queen was seen on the frames. Swarm was very gentle and easy to work. Since I had only one drawn comb in the box there was a lot of festooning on the starter strip frames. The swarm weighed 6 1/2 lbs. 15-20k bees?