I am a new bee keeper. I started 4 hives this Spring and have noticed a change in behavior of one of the hives.
For the last three or four days a cluster of bees about the size of my fist forms just below the entrance of one of the hives. This cluster has come and gone several times. This morning there were thousands of bees swarming over the hives but in a couple of hours it seemed to be back to business as usual. Later in the day the fist sized cluster formed again. Are these bees preparing to swarm? These are Russian bees.
I put a super on the hive a month or so ago and they have begun drawing out come in some of the frames but have not touched more than two of the new frames. The bottom frames are full and the population is very high as it is in all my hives.
The cluster looks like what you would expect if a queen were in the center, but the small number of bees on the cluster makes me doubt this is a swarm.