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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Got suited up and headed out the door to do inspections on a couple hives, and looked up to see the bees come flying out the front gate, make a cyclone and take off into a nearby tree 40 feet up. And there they sit 3 hours later. So a swarm I'm thinking, I knew I should've gone deep two weeks ago when checking this hive. Only five frames working in the top deep, 8 filled in the bottom deep so I thought they had room and were happy. Since I was ready to go, the wife suited up and we went into the hive. We found lots of frames packed with brood, larvae, eggs and honey (see photos). And we found 4 Queen Cells on the face of two different frames, 3 of those sealed. Due to their location, would those not be Supercedure cells? (see photo) Bees swarm when the queens replacement is capped and nearing hatch correct? But that is for swarm I thought. So is the location of these cells indicate they are swarm cells, just not at the bottom of frames? Thanks for any thoughts. Meanwhile we put out deeps with LGO in it to try and lure our girls back, they show a little interest, but will probably move on I think. Wish they would have chosen a lower branch. :) The remaining bees population is still very strong. So strong in fact we thought the swarm was bees from somewhere else. But I saw our bees fly out and join the clump in the tree.

http://s1134.photobucket.com/user/maxgrafixx/slideshow/Cabin Bees/Cabin Bees Swarm 5-24-14
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
replying to my own post I know. Is it possible that this hive did NOT swarm, that was a different swarm which some of my bees joined? And the Supercedure process is still in play in my hive?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Are you feeding? (great pics...!)
No, took the feed off about 2 weeks ago. The hive in question was a September 2013 "cut out" from the eaves of a house. They made it through winter as a small volleyball sized colony. We've had them in a single deep all winter, then up until Late March when we added another deep with some drawn comb. We had been feeding all Spring. Then they boomed in population. We quit feeding when we reasoned that the nectar flow was good. Cold late spring here.
 

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It looks nectar bound to me...(but again, ask 10 beeks the same question, you get 12 different answers). Rotate the unworked outer frames from both boxes into the next inner position. In other words, what is now 9 becomes frame 10, unworked frame 10 becomes frame 9, etc. Don't give them more boxes until they have virtually covered all 20 frames. In box 2, put the unworked frames into frame space 8 and 9...put the worked outer frame (which I assume frames 3 and 6...which should be just honey) out to the edges (spot 1 and 10). They'll know what to do from there. May have fed a bit too long, but I can't say squat, and give kudos to all the Northern beeks that get hives through your brutal winters! :applause:

That is a gorgeous swarm! SUCKS when they do that to us out of reach, or having to sacrificing life and limb!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
... more boxes until they have virtually covered all 20 frames. In box 2, put the unworked frames into frame space 8 and 9...put the worked outer frame (which I assume frames 3 and 6...which should be just honey) out to the edges (spot 1 and 10). They'll know what to do from there. ...

That is a gorgeous swarm! SUCKS when they do that to us out of reach, or having to sacrificing life and limb!
Thanks for the wisdoms. We actually did do some frame shifting, avoiding breaking up the brood nest. Most all frames do have activity and comb drawn, just some not on both sides.
What are your thoughts though about those Queen cells, or Supercedure cells I had pointed out? 4 total, 3 capped. In the meantime the swarm did move on. We missed it. There is a baseball size ball of stragglers or maybe scouts? hanging on in the branch. Still 40 feet up. We are on swarm call in the area, so maybe someone will call about our (former) bees. The remaining hive looks business as usual.
 

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The positioning of the cells is not a clue as to whether they are swarm cells or superseder cells. Instead it's more about the amount of cells found. Superseder is usually just 2 or 3 cells, maybe 4. When swarming, there is many more than that, on many frames, at the top, bottom, and middle of the frames. Besides, sometimes swarming is not just for swarming, but for superseder as well, and they may then replace the older queen at the new location after the queen has started laying again. We just never know, until the event happens.
 

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mine did the same thing was a ten frame deep with 3 empty frames that i moved towards the center saw 4 what i allways thought was supersedure cells and the next day swarmmmmm to a tree 35 ft up lost them but i am helping the bee pop. around here oh well cant win them all
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
... Superseder is usually just 2 or 3 cells, maybe 4. When swarming, there is many more than that, on many frames, at the top, bottom, and middle of the frames. Besides, sometimes swarming is not just for swarming, but for superseder as well.
OK thanks. Well this was 4 cells only, all on frame fronts. As mentioned 3 were complete and capped. So I guess we just wait for the new queen to hatch out, dispatch her competition, and make her mating flight. Can we take the other cells out and put them in a Nuc with some bees, frames of honey and larvae? Or is that not wise? There is a lot of brood, larvae, eggs, etc. in this hive still even after the swarm.

So by what you are saying Ray is that a supercedure/swarm can happen?
TIA.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
mine did the same thing was a ten frame deep with 3 empty frames that i moved towards the center saw 4 what i allways thought was supersedure cells and the next day swarmmmmm to a tree 35 ft up lost them but i am helping the bee pop. around here oh well cant win them all
well that's kind of what we thought too. These guys will boost the feral bee population out there somewhere. They were wild when we got them, so back to the wild they go.
 

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Can we take the other cells out and put them in a Nuc with some bees, frames of honey and larvae?
Yes, that is an easy way to increase your hive numbers, if you have the resources of bees and comb.

So by what you are saying Ray is that a supercedure/swarm can happen?
Yes, it can and does happen occasionally.
 

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first check to see if the queen is there.
take the old queen out now. with a couple frames and the bees on them .
you just start your next hive with that.
the remainder thinks they just swarmed and new queen stays.
 
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