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One of my hives swarmed today onto a cedar limb close to my bee-yard; I got a net and caught most of the cluster and installed them into one deep hive body with 3 frames of honey but no capped brood or uncapped brood.

Should I put a couple of frames of uncapped brood into this hive? Should I place the second deep hive body on now; it was a very large swarm; it felt like 10 pounds in the net.

I wonder if I got the queen? What does it mean when the bees point their tales up in the air and flap their wings? How do I know which hive this swarm came from? How soon before I can tell if I caught the queen and successfully captured the swarm?

I had checked all my hives 2 weeks ago and cleared out all the swarm cells and I was very surprised at this swarm; I saw something today I've never seen in my life before; I saw a dense black cloud/fog of bees over my bee-yard; amazing! It actually kinda scared me; I kept on working in my garden and about 15 minutes later I heard a loud noise and looked up and saw this swarm in the cedar tree.

Glad to have a bee source.
 

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"What does it mean when the bees point their tales up in the air and flap their wings?"
The bees are "fanning" the queen scent indicating that she is inside the container

"How do I know which hive this swarm came from? "
It might be tough to tell right now. But over the next 3 weeks the hive activity will die down to a very low level. At the end of 3 weeks there will no longer be any capped brood in the hive. So inspection is your answer.

"How soon before I can tell if I caught the queen and successfully captured the swarm?"
If you are good at inspection, I would say 5-7 days could tell. If your imspection skills are limited then two weeks will show lots of capped brood.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
"What does it mean when the bees point their tales up in the air and flap their wings?"
The bees are "fanning" the queen scent indicating that she is inside the container
Outstanding!!! This is what the swarm I captured and installed in the new hive was doing!

"How do I know which hive this swarm came from? "
It might be tough to tell right now. But over the next 3 weeks the hive activity will die down to a very low level. At the end of 3 weeks there will no longer be any capped brood in the hive. So inspection is your answer.
Our nectar flow is suppose to begin mid April; no capped brood during the honey flow?

"How soon before I can tell if I caught the queen and successfully captured the swarm?"
If you are good at inspection, I would say 5-7 days could tell. If your imspection skills are limited then two weeks will show lots of capped brood.

Good luck.
Thank you.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You got her, it's always a happy sign when they throw thier rear in the air and start fanning. They are blowing her pheramons into the air saying hey yall she is down here. I don't like to bother them for a week or so after hiving them so they don't take off again. Once she starts laying eggs in there you are good to go.
This makes my evening! It's very conspicuous even for a beginner.

Another point, after getting most of the Swarm/cluster from the cedar tree and installing it, bees continued to cluster in the same area on the cedar tree and I netted them a couple more times and installed them too but finally abandoned it; but the bees kept clustering on that cedar tree. Pheromones at work here? Where do those bees ultimately go? Do they die?

Should I install that second hive body? Does this hive need anything else? Or should I just leave it alone for one (1) week?
 

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where do i get lemin grass oil to try catchn a sworm,isint it like poaching bees if you now thers tuns of hivs just down the hill a bit.
 

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It's not poaching. A wise old(er) beekeeper told me a story about a preacher that was catching swarms around other beekeepers yards. The preacher stated that once they swarm they belong to god. Whoever is there to catch the swarm is receiving that gift from god. As long as you are not in the other person bee yard and pulling swarms off the branches hanging above their hives I wouldn't worry about it.
 

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You may find that one or more of your hives is queenless. Cutting out queen cells isn't good for numerous reasons: 1) it doesn't always prevent swarming 2) the hive usually swarms when the queen cells are capped which means you may have cut the queen cells out post swarm. Doing so leaves them queenless without the option of raising another queen. 3) You may have cut out superceedure cells and not swarm cells. Cell location on the frame is an indication of swarm or superceedure but is not absolute.

Swarm prevention techniques are topics for entire books and I won't get into them here. If you do a search on this site you'll get tons of info.

When you find swarm cells you can do splits and this will generally prevent swarming. The late Richard Taylor stated that when faced with a situation where you're not sure what to do you'll do less harm by doing nothing (paraphrase).
 

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the bees kept clustering on that cedar tree. Pheromones at work here? Where do those bees ultimately go? Do they die?

Should I install that second hive body? Does this hive need anything else? Or should I just leave it alone for one (1) week?
Some of them are always stubborn about staying where the swarm gathered, if it's handy I might keep shaking them loose or remove the branch if it's small. They might disperse back to the hives on their own, or they might stay there for a week or more.

If they have 3 frames of honey and 7 of foundation, they should have enough space for now, but I would check in a week and be ready to add a second box.

Watch for afterswarms!
 

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Our nectar flow is suppose to begin mid April; no capped brood during the honey flow?
The resident queen should have left with the swarm, leaving an eggless gap before her replacement starts laying. Therefore there should be a time down the road without capped brood. That window can vary by quite a bit, and IF there were two queens it wouldn't exist at all:)
 

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For reasons already given, I don't cut out swarm cells. When found, I try to do splits to make an artificial swarm. And if I miss one, and a colony swarms, I figure I'm helping repopulate the feral population. One day I'll catch a swarm from a swarm I've lost. Or the lost swarm willl survive, and at some point its drones will help fertilize one of my virgin queens... so it all evens out, eventually.
Regards,
Steven
 

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Discussion Starter #16
After hiving the swarm I decided to split all of my hives. I split my hives 50-50 because they are super strong with lots of bees, lots of capped brood and lots of swarm cells. I did not cut out any of the swarm cells.

This is my first real Spring as a beekeeper and I've concluded that it sure would be nice to be able to raise queens. The hives I split currently do not have queens. How long will it take before my splits have laying queens? How hard is it to raise queens?

BTW, I've got water out for my cows and dogs and it's chlorinated and I lose a few bees to drowning in this chlorinated water. Is there any way to eliminate this minor loss of bees?

Thank you.
 
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