I thought it was a good idea, my wife said I was nuts. Basically I built a step ladder out of two extension ladders. Attached and rigged so there was no chance of failure. I should know better as I've been in construction for 30 plus years ( not OSHA approved ). I gave the higher swarm a thought for 30 seconds then that tiny bit of common sense in by brain took over.
well when it rains it pours! Day three and another swarm from one of my hives. This time it was slightly higher than my catch on Friday. This time I used a Bee Vac that I made earlier. Everything was going great until I realized the vac gate damper was almost fully closed. Sad to say i lost the swarm. Leason learned. I need a day off from this hobby.
I had a swarm move into a swarm trap on 5/24. Woke up this morning to one of my hives decided an overcast drizzle day was a good time to swarm. They ended up 60' in a maple tree. They are still there now at 7:15.
The swarm trap was transferred to a 10 frame hive. Very healthy size swarm. So I lost one and gained one!
No swarms into my swarm traps in New Haven, and no swarms from my hives. I've been proactive in providing plenty of room for the queen to lay while the maple/dandelion/fruit tree blooms occurred.
I've now tried to consolidate the brood nest and provide supers atop the brood nest with the nectar containing frames and additional empty supers for the black locust, clover, and tulip tree nectar flow. Hoping for more than I can handle...
I had performed a couple splits trying to prevent some swarming action. I caught another small swarm and had another move into a swarm trap. The large swarm high up in the tree is still there. Hopefully they move into a swarm trap. When it rains it pours.
Today, 6/5/2019. Litchfield county. I'm assuming from the size of it (looks big to me, but I've never caught a swarm before) it can't be from the nuc I bought in April. It has to be from the split I made over a month ago. Then I put on supers a couple of weeks ago. Now the thing swarms anyway. The queenless-side of the split had a queen just last week or so. I went away for 4 days, walk out of my house at noon to hear a loud roar of bees and happened to see where it landed. It still isn't completely in the box, but I'm going out now to hopefully reign them all in off the tarp. They're still buzzing around like mad and nailed me 3 times already. So much for gentle swarms! (well, one was definitely my fault)
06470, Newtown, CT (Fairfield County)
Bees swarmed sometime 8-12-19, found and captured.
Comments - We have 10 hives of various sizes and queen rightness. We suspected this swarm came from the largest hive two (2) 8 frame brood boxes, three (3) medium supers and two ekes. I checked this morning and the population is fine, with Eggs and a marked yellow (2017) queen. All our queen right hives are marked so I will work through them and try where this swarm originated (downpour during the middle of the inspection today). We have some neighbors with hives, and although it is possible as you can see in the pictures, this swarm found its way to the bottom of a 5 frame nuc. I was in the yard early yesterday morning and didn't see the swarm so I assume the swarmed yesterday while I was at work. Swarm.jpgSwarm 1.jpg
Today in New Haven, CT USA, I was able to get all my hives treated with OAV for the 2nd time this winter. The temperature got up to about 56F (~14C), and it was really nice to have the bees flying around.
Also, a hybrid witch hazel (Hamamelis x intermedia) was being worked by the bees. I think they might have just been getting nectar and not pollen. Nice to have something for them to do in January! It's supposed to be warm tomorrow morning, too, so maybe I'll check to see if any are in need of some supplemental feeding.
Crocus tomassinianus was blooming and being worked by the bees yesterday. It was in the mid-40's in the afternoon. The bees were bringing in pollen of 2 different colors, so they're starting to build-up for the 2020 season. I put 'deck of cards' sized protein patties on for them to have something to do when it's still not nice enough to fly.
Three swarms (all from my own hives) captured on May 4th. All were put onto foundation and given 2 gallons of syrup and a protein patty to support their drawing out new foundation.
These hives had been boosted with protein patties and some 1:1 syrup in March, and had 2019 queens that were laying up a storm. They were well supered up, but I hadn't been opening the sides of the brood nest or checkerboarding.
Phenologically, the back yard apple tree was in full bloom, and dandelions are at their peak.
06470, Newtown, CT (Fairfield County)
Two hives swarmed, first at 9:26 am second at 3:22pm. (one of the benefits of working from home)
Comments - One swarm was somewhat expected. We had a strong overwintered hive we took 3 splits out of but they kept generating swarm cells so I pulled the queen and left a few frames with cells. I assumed it was too weak to swarm but I was wrong. The second swarm was totally unexpected. I am an NETC certified tree climber but both were too far out on a limb too high for my rope walking skills. Each swarm stayed overnight (with the rain) way up in the canopy. The 3:22 swarm took off this morning heading south west at 8:49. The second swarm took off at 9:36, headed north and regrouped on another tree. I finally noticed it was gone this morning at 1400 (I had to do some work). Inspection of the non expected hive showed that they had mostly filled two (2) shallow supers.
All my hives were on a 10 day formic treatment. Multiple traps around, some interest yesterday but obviously no takes. Swarm.jpg