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Author Topic: weather-swarm connection?  (Read 1980 times)

Online kathyp

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weather-swarm connection?
« on: June 08, 2009, 05:53:51 PM »
this came up in the removal section, and i thought i'd post it here also.  has anyone noticed a connection between frequency of swarm calls and severe weather?  i got a call last week just before a severe t-storm.  i had picked up a couple of swarms earlier between a series of pretty good t-storms.  rebel rose did the same the other day.

does there appear to be a connection between swarms and sudden, severe changes in weather?  i was wondering if pressure changes helped trigger the swarming instinct?

it is swarm season....but we do not have those kinds of storms often here, so i found it interesting that both storms brought swarm calls with them.
.....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.....

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Offline riverrat

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2009, 06:00:02 PM »
Not sure if the weather has anything to do with it but I can say I picked up a swarm a few weeks ago while the tornado sirens was blowing in town.
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Offline Rebel Rose Apiary

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2009, 07:33:59 PM »
There might just be something to it. I have noticed that there will be more swarms during and around the time of a full moon. There has been so many storms lately, that I think the bees do not want to wait for a sunny day!

My last swarm I captured was during a really bad thunderstorm that had heavy rain and lots of lightning.....might not have been the safest time to get that swarm.....but it sure was a nice bunch of Italians!

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Offline Valarie

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2009, 07:48:09 PM »
It seems like we can usually count on a few swarm calls the day after it rains, but maybe thats just when the folks notice them...
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Offline wildbeekeeper

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2009, 09:16:08 PM »
i too have noticed that more swarms are called in after a storm episode and also right before..... for instance today I picked up two swarms and there were t-storms appraoching within a few hours.....last week i picked up two swarms and it was the first nice day after a t-storm epsode.....definately somne sort of connection

Offline Rebel Rose Apiary

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2009, 10:45:03 PM »
The last swarm I picked up swarmed DURING the thunderstorm....I had been out walking around watching the thunderstorm and lightning. When I walked back towards the house, that is when I seen them in the little bush trying to get out of the rain.

This swarm was really determined to swarm to a new home...thunderstorms or not.

That post about getting a swarm while the tornado sirens were going off really is strange too.

Brenda

Offline JP

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2009, 10:54:36 PM »
It rained hard this evening. At 12:56 I got a 911 call about a swarm on someone's gate but the message wasn't clear and the operator that took the call when I called was gone for the day.

Y'all know what I think about swarms and the full moon.


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Online kathyp

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2009, 11:28:32 PM »
i was thinking more that the pressure changes before some of these storms might have something to do with it.  big changes with t-storms and tornados.  just a thought.  wondered if anyone else had the same experiences.
.....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

Offline dragonfly

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2009, 11:40:08 PM »
I would not be at all surprised. Animal behaviors change with weather changes (namely barometric pressure fluctuations), why not bees too? :?

Offline Cheryl

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2009, 12:02:21 AM »
I've noticed a connection too. I've only seen six or seven swarms in my newness as a beek, but I can definitely say they were just before or close on the heels of a big change in weather.
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Offline Valarie

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2009, 02:36:26 AM »
You'd think if the bees knew it was gonna rain, they wouldn't put themselves out in the cold. Maybe they look at it differently... :)
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Offline Bee Happy

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2009, 04:19:56 AM »
It would stand up to evolution logic. (theoretically)  2 or 3 genetic "copies" having a better chance in severe weather than 1?
(but then again, they'd have to start the queen cell WAY in advance of any stormtracking tech we have now...)
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Offline skflyfish

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2009, 09:23:10 AM »
I wonder if the stormy weather is needed for increased humidity, so they can follow the queens sent.

When the humidity is high, it is much easier to smell, so if they use their sense of smell to follow the queen, then it may be a survival instinct to swarm during humid times. We do the same thing with smoking, but in the other extreme, to inhibit their sense of smell.

It makes me wonder when swarms occur in dryer climates like Arizona and Colorado. Do they swarm during storms also, or during the morning when the humidity is higher.

Thought I would throw it out.


Offline Cheryl

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #13 on: July 04, 2009, 02:30:35 PM »
We had a rather grand thunderstorm last night, and now I've got a bunch of scouts checking out my swarm bucket.
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Offline Cheryl

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #14 on: July 05, 2009, 03:29:33 PM »
They arrived!!! They're here!!

I have the swarm-bucket mounted sideways in the fork of a tree in the back yard. photo

I did not see these bees arrive, so I have no idea how big this colony is. They all seem clustered inside close to the door -- that could mean that the entire bucket is filled up with bees (larger colony)... or it could mean that the queen chose to start building closer to the door and work her way back (smaller colony). photo
We are what we repeatedly do.
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Offline skflyfish

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #15 on: July 05, 2009, 05:17:38 PM »
Awesome!   :)

Offline annette

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #16 on: July 06, 2009, 01:29:48 AM »
Very exciting Cheryl

I simply must purchase some of those swarm traps next year and hang them up.

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: weather-swarm connection?
« Reply #17 on: July 08, 2009, 07:36:08 PM »
I just had a hive swarm during a rain storm.  That is DURING A RAIN STORM, not just before, not right after, but during.  The queen, and the main cluster only made it about 10-15 feet from the parent hive into a prune tree directly above the parent hive. 
Hiving a swarm of bees, water logged and in disarry, small clusters in a dozen or more places, was not the best conditions to hive a swarm.  They rejected the 1st hive offering, a 5 frame deep nuc with partially drawn plastic frames, and went back up in the prune tree.  2nd go around I used a queen includer and a frame of brood. 

Seems there is a lot of anticdotal information concerning the timing of swarms and storms.
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