Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

Is this orientation flight behavior?

2479 Views 9 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  dynemd
I see my bees doing this several times a week during the middle of the day. Is this orientation flight behavior?
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
I would say yes. Orientation and cleansing flights.
sure looks like it to me. G
It just looks like mostly regular foragers coming and going to me, but it's a little hard to tell from a video. It's not swarming. When a swarm issues almost all of the bees will be flying straight out of the hive. If you watch a single bee during orientation you will see that they weave back and forth while facing the hive - wider and wider before flying off. In your video many of the bees were coming in for a landing. Orienters are leaving. If it is a swarm issuing you can look up at the sky and see the somewhat chaotic looking cloud of bees flying around. Once you have seen it it's easy to spot - by the sound too. Also orientation flights usually end within 10 minutes or so. Foraging goes on for hours.
Looks like foragers coming and going, to me.

Foragers - Straight in and straight out. Lasts all day during good weather.

Orienting - Weaving back and forth while facing the hive. Happens for about 15 - 20 minutes at the same time each day for a particular hive, usually sometime in mid-to-late afternoon.

Robbing - Total chaos in front of the hive. Lasts all day until the victim hive is empty of stores.

Swarming - More and more bees flying in a cyclone pattern generally in front of the hive before they finally depart to the highest branch of your mean neighbor's tallest tree. Last for about 10 minutes until all the swarming bees have issued from the hive. At its peak, the bees come pouring out of the hive.
OK. Thanks guys. I just wanted to double check because they seems agitated inside too (moving quicker than normal) when I looked through my observation window. I'll get pretty close to watch my bees without protective gear on and they don't mind me one bit but when I see that many at once I get nervous to get more than 8 feet from them. But they weren't aggressive. :)
Beeing in Tenn. your probably in a good nectar flow. (Normal Foraging)
Nectar flow + Orientation flights.
Thank you for the video and all the answers! I am new to this and was worried it was robbing.
Those are orienting bees, mine do that too in the afternoon and I worry a little until I get to see them better up close.
Check out this YouTube video that shows robbing. Click Link Here
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.