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Author Topic: First Swarm Collection  (Read 593 times)
malachii
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Location: West Gippsland


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« on: October 19, 2010, 02:26:32 AM »

G'day All,

I'm a newbie here (but have lerked for a few weeks!) so please go easy on me!

I collected my first swarm on sunday and put it into a new hive.  The bees dont seem to be doing much - cant see any returning with pollen and quite a few just crawl around the outside of the hive.  When I opened the hive this morning there was a clump of bees clinging to the frame of honey I had put in there to help them along but they didn't seem to be very active.  Completely different to my other hive.

Have I done something wrong (eg killed or not collected the queen) or does it take them a day or two to settle down?  Is there anything I should do to help them?

malachii
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philinacoma
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Location: Coburg, Vic, Australia


« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2010, 02:57:41 AM »

It is possible you don't have the queen. But then the queen may not be ready to lay if it's a secondary swarm.

Describe how the swarm collection went.
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malachii
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« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2010, 03:55:47 AM »

Swarm had just got themselves into a shed wall.  They hadn't been there long as they had only made 3 small pieces of comb. There was no honey, pollen or eggs in the comb.  The bees were quite peaceful and were swept into a bucket pretty easily.  I went back the next day with a temporary bee vac that I made out of a cardboard box and collected the last few stragglers.  It was a small swarm (maybe 4-5 hands full of bees) and from what we (the owner of the shed and I) can make out, there are no bee hives or keepers in the immediate area so it MAY be a wild swarm.  The bees were brought home in the evening and put immediately into their hive which I had already set up ready with a frame of honey in it for them.  I put their comb into the hive attached with rubber bands to a frame and the rest of the frames have foundation on them (I dont have any drawn comb spare).  The next morining there was a "beard" of bees on the front of the hive but they didn't go anywhere and climed back into the hive later on that day.  I placed the second load of bees into the hive the following evening (just after I had collected them).

malachii
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SlickMick
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Location: Brisbane, Australia


« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2010, 06:06:07 AM »

You may have a queen or no queen. If you have a queen you should see pollen moving in soon. If they are queenless, they wont have anything to make a new queen with, so if you give it a few more days and have a look for single eggs at the bottom of the cells then you should be ok. If not I would be tempted to put a frame of eggs larva and nurse bees out of your existing hive in with them so that they have larva/eggs to requeen themselves with.

It seems that it is quite a small swarm and perhaps a full 10 or 8 Frame deep is too much for them to look after. I would be inclined to reduce the number of frames to the point where there are bees on all frames.. 2 or 3 frames might be the way to go. Increase the number of frames only when there are a sufficient number of bees to cover the new frame/s.

By the way, whereabouts are you located??

Mick
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On the outer Barcoo where the churches are few,
   And men of religion are scanty,
On a road never cross'd 'cept by folk that are lost,
   One Michael Magee had a shanty.

Now this Mike was the dad of a ten-year-old lad,
   Plump, healthy, and stoutly conditioned;
He was strong as the best, but poor Mike had no rest
   For the youngster had never been christened,
A BUSH CHRISTENING - A.B. "Banjo" Paterson http://www.middlemiss.org/lit/authors/patersonab/poetry/christen.html
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