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Author Topic: My bees arrived in an unexpected way  (Read 1267 times)
chris8126
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« on: May 03, 2009, 02:46:00 AM »

I just got my first swarm today at my backdoor.  My neighbor has a couple hives and I think one swarmed and set up shop in a building out back last year.  I called a guy who came and cut them out last year and said their gone.  To make a long story short they survived the winter and I have been preparing to uncover them again to transfer them to a hive I prepared.  I was going to do this tomorrow and I was building split frames w/ hinges to put comb in.  Today in a matter of minutes the sky went from clear to a cloud of bees a few hundred yards from any of the neighbor hives or hive in my building.  I'm not sure where they came from.  I didn't know what was going on.  I watched them and as they clustered on a branch about 20ft up I realized I had my first swarm.  I had dad use the loader tractor to lift me up to get them in a hive body and after almost dropping the whole thing I got them in and on the ground.  

http://picasaweb.google.com/chris8126/Swarm?authkey=Gv1sRgCKObxYnXyYqS7gE&feat=directlink#
« Last Edit: May 03, 2009, 07:06:30 AM by buzzbee » Logged
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Ken
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« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2009, 07:12:37 AM »

Swarmed bees are revved up to build a new colony. This is a great way to start!!
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Robo
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« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2009, 07:20:53 AM »

Congrats

Looks like a happy beekeeper behind that veil  grin
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MustbeeNuts
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« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2009, 08:30:37 AM »

Congrats on that swarm you got there , nice size , I can't wait to get a swarm, heck or even see one. Smiley
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kathyp
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« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2009, 10:27:19 AM »

congratulations!!  lots of fun, isn't it? clever way to get up there.  how would we survive without the John Deere?!!

 if you think about it next time, spread a tarp.  that way, if you do drop them, at least they are on something.....
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
chris8126
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« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2009, 12:42:45 PM »

Using a tarp sounds like a good idea.  I thought about cutting the limb but it was bigger than I thought.  I heard an old bee keeper around here would use his finger to gently work into the middle and try to find the queen and put her in the hive, sounds interesting just tricky maybe.  I have never seen a live queen and I really want to go open it up and start pulling frames to find her.  Is that ok to do only a day after I caught them.  I also want to move them should I do it as soon as possible or wait a few days?  Sorry I keep asking tons of questions I have been searching on here and internet for some specific answers without much luck.
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kathyp
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« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2009, 12:48:12 PM »

i have not caught a swarm at home.  with that in mind, here is what i do:  i bring them home, put them in a deep or medium, depending on size of swarm, feed them, and leave them alone for about a week.  it's good to put them where you want them from the start.  the fewer times you move them, the less confusion for them and the faster they can find their own food.  remember that they must re-orient to the hive every time you move them.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #7 on: May 05, 2009, 08:22:43 AM »

Congratulations!! chris8126  on catching  your swarm

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« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2009, 11:17:58 AM »

Congratulations!! I am glad that your dad was there with the JD! I would not trust my own dad to put me up there in the bucket though....and he has been a farmer all of his life! Scares me to ride in the truck with him driving now that I think about it.

I leave the bees alone for ten days, as that is what my old mentor told me to do with swarms. Then you can check for the queen, eggs, pollen, etc.

It is nice to see a family work together like that. You should be happy getting a nice hive of bees like that.

Brenad
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chris8126
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« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2009, 11:14:45 PM »

I was able to check my bees today.  They had 3 frames drawn out pretty well on both sides and had the next two from center started.  I saw lots of cells with a liquid in the them (nectar) and a few with a dark solid (pollen) not many though?  I also saw lots of eggs that all looked very small.  Nothing was capped but from what I have read it's still too early.  I have never put an entrance reducer on this hive should I do that now, I don't know if they are being robbed or not I just didn't know if it would throw the bees to go from wide open to a reducer?  I opened it about 6 this evening and there was three frames both sides full of bees so I don't know if this is enough to protect themselves or not.
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Robo
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« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2009, 07:50:06 AM »

Seeing nectar in the cells is a good sign that they are not getting robbed, or at least not badly.  Do you see any fighting at the entrance or and shiny bees (fighting wears the hair off the bees and they look shiny, almost wet).  You can install a reducer now with minimal impact to the bees, they will adapt quickly.

Sounds like things are going along quite well.

Are you feeding them?  If so how?  Boardman feeders are good for encouraging robbing.

http://robo.bushkillfarms.com/beekeeping/feeder-compare/
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"Opportunity is missed by most people because it comes dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison


chris8126
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« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2009, 09:26:42 AM »

I don't think I see fighting at the entrance but I was concerned because my neighbor has hive and sometimes his entrance is crowded with bees where the incoming bees have to file through.  My hive might have 3 or 4 on the whole entrance running back and forth.  I guess his hive has more numbers.  I put a gallon bag in hive of a 5:3 sugar water mixture for the first week.  The emptied it and I thought with all the things blooming they would be ok? 
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