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Author Topic: Catching swarm with cold water?  (Read 1194 times)
Sean Kelly
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« on: April 14, 2008, 02:59:26 AM »

Hey all!

Just got done watching the Nova special:  Tales from the Hive.  Really cool video, totally recommend it!  Think I'm gunna order a copy from PBS.

Anyways, they showed a clip where a swarm landed on a power line and called in some beekeepers along with the fire department to get them down.  The beekeepers had a garden sprayer and sprayed cold water on the swarm before knocking them into a box.  Well the method obviously did not work since the swarm took off (should have put a lid on it quicker).  But why would they spray water on the swarm?  Anyone do this when they catch swarms and can explain to a swarm rookie what it means?

Thanks again!

Sean Kelly

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JP
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« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2008, 09:11:49 AM »

Sean, don't know about cold water, I wouldn't do it, but a lot of people spray sugar water on swarms to wet their wings. This keeps the ones on the outside from flying, but Imo, it can also stir them up a bit as well. Sometimes if they have been clustered for a while and they are hungry, they would welcome the sugar water. I shake swarms in a box, and feed them in the box.


...JP
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Scott Derrick
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« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2008, 09:13:29 PM »

Sean,

I almost always spray them with 1 to 1 sugar water before I remove a ball. I place a little spearmint and lemongrass oil in the mixture as well. I really think this helps to calm them a bit. I also agree with JP about the swarms welcoming the sugar water. I have been spraying the inside of my swarm box and I think it helps keep them in when I start loading them into the box. I see them start feeding almost immediately.
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Sean Kelly
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« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2008, 11:29:46 PM »

Yeah, that's what I kinda thought.  Makes sense since you would spray the bees in a new package before you install them.  I mean they're still techinally a swarm but inside a box.

But this video threw me off with the whole cold water treatment.  You gota check out this video and see what I'm talking about.  Seemed sorta weird, plus the guys doing it ended up making the swarm leave instead of catching it in that neat wooden box he had.  Cool video though, there's a wicked scene of a real queen mating in flight and I guess it's the only known video footage of this process.  Gives you a new respect for drones, thats for sure!

Sean Kelly
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"My son,  eat  thou honey,  because it is good;  and the honeycomb,  which is sweet  to thy taste"          - Proverbs 24:13
JP
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Location: Metairie, Louisiana

I like doing cut-outs, but I love catching swarms!


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« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2008, 11:32:27 PM »

Yeah, that's what I kinda thought.  Makes sense since you would spray the bees in a new package before you install them.  I mean they're still techinally a swarm but inside a box.

But this video threw me off with the whole cold water treatment.  You gota check out this video and see what I'm talking about.  Seemed sorta weird, plus the guys doing it ended up making the swarm leave instead of catching it in that neat wooden box he had.  Cool video though, there's a wicked scene of a real queen mating in flight and I guess it's the only known video footage of this process.  Gives you a new respect for drones, thats for sure!

Sean Kelly

Hey sean, how about a link to the videos?


...JP
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"Good friends are as sweet as honey" Winne the Pooh

My pictures can be viewed at http://picasaweb.google.com/pyxicephalus
and
http://picasaweb.google.com/112138792165178452970

My Youtube videos can be viewed here: http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=JPthebeeman&aq=f

My website JPthebeeman.com http://www.jpthebeeman.com/jpthebeeman/
Sean Kelly
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Location: Buckley, Wa

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« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2008, 11:53:24 PM »

Here's a link to info about the movie.  You can even buy it from here for $19 (instead of $30 from Dadant's catalog).  I'm gunna buy it when I have a chance (we checked it out from the libraray).
PBS.org - Nova - Tales from the Hive

Sean Kelly
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"My son,  eat  thou honey,  because it is good;  and the honeycomb,  which is sweet  to thy taste"          - Proverbs 24:13
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