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Author Topic: When the Bee's swarm, how long do they stay where they light  (Read 4716 times)
dgcantrellsr
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« on: May 08, 2008, 05:38:36 PM »

  I had some swarm an hour or so ago, and they landed in a small popular tree about 20 yards from the hive and about 20 feet up. Now it has started to rain and I can't tell if if they are still on the limb.
 I don't have another hive at this moment anyway, so I may have lost them.
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MrILoveTheAnts
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« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2008, 05:49:24 PM »

Usually they stay there for the day and will take off the next chance they get and will do so bright and early.
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BeeHopper
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« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2008, 06:41:19 PM »

I captured a hanging swarm that according to the owner was there for 3 full days before I arrived mid morning on the 4th day. I thought that to be a little unusual.
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tngold
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« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2008, 09:31:02 PM »

Why not go ahead and get the swarm down, and find the queen. Remove her and put the bees back in the hive they came from. They may even go back on there own with out the queen. I would look for more cells or newly hathed queens in that hive they may throw more swarms, and that is a sure way to lose a potential honey crop.                                                                                     Jeff                                                                                                                                                                                                     
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CBEE
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« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2008, 07:49:13 AM »

There's no telling how long they will stay. I had a swarm monday that landed and were there about an hour and left while I was getting a box to put them in. If it would not have taken that hour for me to clear enough away from the place they landed I would have got them. I had everything ready but needed the box and when I got back they were gone rolleyes It was very dissapointing to say the least.
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Scadsobees
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« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2008, 08:57:19 AM »

If it is raining they will probably not be going anywhere.  Although if you try to hive them in the rain they won't be very happy about it and will let you know.

I don't know what a driving rain will do to them.

Swarms are like the wind.  You don't know how long they will stay or where they will go. 1 hour 1 day 3 days, a week?

-r
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Cindi
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« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2008, 09:25:37 AM »

Some interesting stuff here.  When I caught a swarm in a neighbouring town at my Sister-in-Laws, the bees had been there for three days.  I initially was too busy to get them, but then my Brother-in-Law phoned and said that they were still there, so I went and got them, that would have been day 4, guess it just all depends on whatever it depends on.   Too bad I lost these bees to the varroa, they overwintered, but collapsed the following fall.  I didn't know enough facts about the devasation of varroa.  Hey, come to think of it, they were the ones that probably brought this huge mite issue to my apiary, hee, hee.  Beautiful and wonderful day in this great life we all share. Cindi
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« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2008, 08:32:21 PM »

The range is generally somewhere between 5 minutes and 5 days.  More precisely, 75% of the time it is 5 minutes less than you need to get them.  I had one swarm stay in a pear tree for over a week through 2 rain storms.  I couldn't shake them out or cut them out.  I left a box baited with comb and lemon grass oil on a ladder under them.  After about 8 days they hived themselves. 
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Dane Bramage
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« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2008, 09:30:58 PM »

I left a box baited with comb and lemon grass oil on a ladder under them.  After about 8 days they hived themselves. 

I've got one way up in a willow tree nearby that I first noticed 4-5 days ago.  I'm doing same thing (swarm trap) with an empty single deep, drawn comb & lemongrass oil.  I've seen a few scouts but unsure if they're from the swarm.  I'm half expecting to see some major comb drawn way up there in the willow if/when the swarm decides to move on. 
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KONASDAD
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« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2008, 05:42:37 PM »

They stay as long as they need to find a new home. Last week, I missed four swarms by minutes and they had only been there less than 2 hrs. Another swarm was 3 days and had a little bit of wax on tree limb. They dont prefer to be hanging where predators can get them. No telling.
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doak
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« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2008, 06:16:18 PM »

I have counted as high as 7 days on one.
Depending on the weather and if they find a suitable place to take up house bee keeping.
 Smiley ;)doak
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dgcantrellsr
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« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2008, 10:00:44 PM »

  Well the next morning after it stopped raining I took my power saw and cut almost all the way through the tree and tried to gently let it down in between two more small poplar trees, but the limbs the swarm was on sorta brushed some other limbs and knocked some of the swarm loose.
 Well when I got it down to the ground I started pruning limbs and leaves till I could get at them, they were on two limbs, so I put all I could into a box and set it in front of another new hive, but they didn't  seen to want to go up the sheet, so I took the top off the hive and three frames out and took the limbs out of the box and shook them down into the hive, then put the frames back in. The top board did not fit the cover real good and left a lot of space in the top, I was pressed for time and had to leave, so when I got back that evening there were only a few bee's (maybe 20-30) still in the hive.  I don't know if I got the queen in there to start with, but I give it a shot.
 Not had time to check old hive yet, but I'm still a green horn. But that was an interesting experience. I learned a little and hopefully I'll do better next time.
  Thanks for all the replies.
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #12 on: May 11, 2008, 02:46:23 PM »

Things to remember about free hanging swarms.
1. A swarm out of one of your hives in or near your own beeyard will usually leave within a day.  They are just using the resting place to get organizedbefore moving to a preselected site or resting during a prolonged search.
2. A free hanging swarm elsewhere is a hive at rest and in search mode.  They swarmed before finding a home and will remain in that location until they find a suitable home site.
3. when hiving a swarm make sure you have enough space for the bees.  A 5 frame deep is usually enough for a 3 lb swarm, something larger would require a larger box, either 8 or 10 frame.  Figure a 8 frame medium as a 5 frame deep.  If using mediums, as I do, 2 boxes is often required--especially if using a nuc box.
4. Older equipment is more inviting to swarms than new equipment.  Use you older supers for catching swarms, bees will abscond from new boxes more often than not unless some type of baiting is done (brood frames, lemon grass oil, drawn frames, etc).
5. Bees will leave newly made comb behind if they find a site they like better.  It is not unusual to find that an absconded hive had started to draw comb and still left.  Again baiting may be necessary on foundation only frames.  They are less likely to swarm away from starter strips or foundationless frames.
6. The ideal bait or catch hive is older boxes with a couple of drawn frames and some foundtionless or starter strip frames.  Placing brood, honey, and/or pollen frames in the hive will also help.  Drone frames work as well as worker frames when it comes to brood comb.
7. Artificial aging can be done on a box via blow torch on the inside of the box.  Just enough to raise the grain a tad.

Brian's Swarming 101 from Beekeeping From A Wheelchair.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #13 on: May 12, 2008, 07:10:19 AM »

If they have a plan for where they are going, they usually swarm around 10:00 am and leave for the new place around 2:00 pm.  But it could be as short as two hours and depends on when the sun comes out etc.  If they don't have a plan, they might find a place as quickly as four or five hours or never.  Some get stuck and never leave.
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Michael Bush
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