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On my balcony I have some boxes.. Yesterday a group of noisy scouts visited
and checked them all day over and over. This morning 10 am swarm come.
It was spectacular to see. Gave them foundation and bottom board.

Questions.. did they spend last night in a tree or in a hive?
If from a tree, they might be more hungry, right?
Do I need to feed this evening.. its windy day..
I have no idea how long their reserves last, dont want them to starve.
Thanks..
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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They spent last night clustered wherever, tree, side of a building, etc. Swarms load up on carbs before they leave so they are not going to starve unless it rains for a week straight. I would put a feeder on the hive since you gave them foundation that needs to be drawn out. Do not give them too much at once, maybe a half litre at a time, or all the cells they draw will be filled with syrup and the queen may not have room to lay.
 

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Your swarm did not necessarily spend the night anywhere at all.
They very well could have left the hive at 9am, spent 20 minutes on a tree somewhere, then came your way.
OR they could have come directly to you, without perching anywhere.
The scouts started looking for a new home days before the swarm even flew out of the hive.

Overall, I would not worry of feeding them as long as they are able to fly and forage.
They have brought enough food with them for 3-4 days.
 

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Swarms have survived for millions of years without anyone feeding them. Feeding will help draw comb and build up faster.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Greg, when was the last time you saw a swarm leave the parent hive early in the morning? My experience has always been mid-afternoon. But, what you say is true. A swarm could easily go straight to a pre-selected location. Explains why sometimes a swarm will cluster near the apiary and send out scouts, and other times it is just gone.
 

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Greg, when was the last time you saw a swarm leave the parent hive early in the morning? My experience has always been mid-afternoon. But, what you say is true. A swarm could easily go straight to a pre-selected location. Explains why sometimes a swarm will cluster near the apiary and send out scouts, and other times it is just gone.
JW:

While I can't speak for any other locale, a benefit of COVID-19 is that I have been working at home through the entirety of swarm season here in Western Kentucky.

It has given me the opportunity to watch maybe a dozen swarms emanate and I could almost set my watch at 11:00 a.m. to walk out the door to watch the process unfold.

That said, I have only seen one swarm leave the colony and fly directly to their new home- and it was the first swarm of the season, very early in the year (April 4th).
 

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Greg, when was the last time you saw a swarm leave the parent hive early in the morning? My experience has always been mid-afternoon. But, what you say is true. A swarm could easily go straight to a pre-selected location. Explains why sometimes a swarm will cluster near the apiary and send out scouts, and other times it is just gone.
+1 9am is a bit early to arrive from direct depart, Ones I have seen leave 12-2pm.. hang out, if in the tree past 5pm they spend the night. Swarming seems to be a mid day activity . latest arrival i have seen is 4pm, earliest departure 11ish. could be Sun orientation related, or warmth, or who knows.
So IMo arriving 10am was treed some where close decided over night and did not have far to go.

However all is local so there it may differ.

GG
Again Opinion interspersed with empirical observations.

Also where one is caught other can and will be, so reset the spot :)
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Russ and GG, thanks for the observations.

The more one learns, the more one realizes how much they don't know. The swarms I have seen leaving my hives have been in the afternoon. Which also happens to be when I am out in the bee yard. Hmm, correlation?
 

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The more one learns, the more one realizes how much they don't know. The swarms I have seen leaving my hives have been in the afternoon. Which also happens to be when I am out in the bee yard. Hmm, correlation?
Certainly true in my own experience, JW.

Maybe the bees are waiting to swarm until they see the friendly beekeeper just to be nice?
 
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