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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First topbar hive.
Installed a small swarm about 2 weeks ago.
did not think they would make it due to size.
They did not, a few were alive but other than some comb building most were deceased.
On Friday (2 days ago) I installed a much larger swarm (perhaps the size of two packages)
Most but not all went into the hive from dumping them in out of my "swarm carrier"
I id not physically see the queen but they exhibited queen present behavior when I captured the swarm on Friday morning
yesterday about 1/3 of the bees were huddled around the outside entrance. (note: there is a inside feeder that they have been making use of)
I suited up and swept them into a dust pan and re-installed inside the hive.
Today nearly half of the new swarm is outside on that end. Its like a swarm activity. They are also fairly aggressive (like there is no queen) and a large amount are flying too and fro.

Due to the activity and no comb in frames I cannot find the queen, and being a topbar hive i cannot put existing comb/frames in the hive.

Should I
a. not worry about it - they will figure it out.
b. plan on them leaving?
c. Put a swarm lure inside the topbar hive?
d. order a queen. and run the risk of the hive leaving before she gets here or having a turf battle between two queens.
 

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My package did that on evening 2.
I had made an error on the hive venting system, (my interior vent was covered) I uncovered the vent, they haven't done it since. It was hot that day, about 85-90

I believe they call that bearding

No other experience, sorry
 

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Is it bearding? Generally if it is bearding they will go in the hive at night when it cools down, but sometimes they will have a contingent outside all night if it isn't too cool.

Putting the girls in a box doesn't mean they are accepting it as their own. How much comb did the first swarm draw out?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
its bearding. The first swarm only drew out maybe a section 5 x 4 and its all empty.
Biggest concern is the aggressiveness. anyone within 20 ft of the Hive is attacked. I was trimming some cedar hedges over 100 ft away and after two stings put on a bee hat.
The other 5 hives currently on the property are no problem.
 

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Give them a week to lock them in and requeen. An upper entrance will probably do away with most of the bearding as well. It may be too warm in the hive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Its a top bar. the entrance is half way up one side. The bottom is a full screen Hive is 1 inch cedar unpainted (oiled though on outside)
So you are suggesting wait a week to see if they will all go in? I can lock them in but a good 1/3 or more are staying on the outside bearded.
 

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For an upper entrance you would just move a bar back to let them move in. Michael Bush has info on his site. For a package or a swarm it is best to close off the bottom, if it is wide open they probably won't move in, since it looks impossible to defend.
 
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