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Author Topic: Mid-August swarm  (Read 685 times)

Offline Sour Kraut

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Mid-August swarm
« on: August 15, 2013, 10:32:53 AM »
off a power pole late yesterday

they covered an area about 30 " top to bottom, half way around

estimated 1.5-2 pounds

put them in a nuc box, going to give a pollen patty and feed to encourage them

any other ideas, other than combining with a weak hive ?

Offline WarPonyFarms

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Re: Mid-August swarm
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2013, 12:42:47 PM »
When I pull late July or August swarms I use two options dependant on swarm size.

A: Give them as much drawn comb as I can spare and a couple frames of capped brood to provide a kick start to build them into a full size hive.
If you have a fall flow you want their numbers high enough to take advantage of it.

B: Give them a couple frames of drawn comb and put them into a double hive box with another nuc and winter them as a 4 frame or double high 8 frame nuc, depending on how quickly they build.

A small swarm like you describe I would select option B so they can share the heat of another nuc's cluster on cold nights and over the winter.

Good Luck


Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: Mid-August swarm
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2013, 11:07:43 PM »
I agree with WarPonyFarms to an extent.

What I would do is set the swarm up as a 3 tier nuc for overwintering. Using the suggestions of using drawn frames and a couple of frames of brood into 3 nuc boxes.  Keep the worker bees on the frames and do a combine with the brood frames and the swarm.  This can then be expanded in the spring into either an 8 frame Garden Hive or a 10 frame American Standard Hive.

The 3 tiers of the nuc are transferred into a 3 tier brood box of either 8 or 10 frames and frames are manipulated to increase the size of the brood chamber at the time of the transfer.  I just set up a late split into my 3 tier nuc method of rapid hive development.  The 3 tiers of the nuc can be filled out by mid-Sept and be winter ready at that time.
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Offline BlueBee

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Re: Mid-August swarm
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2013, 04:25:17 AM »
I wintered about a dozen 4 frame medium nucs in homemade polystyrene boxes last winter.  It’s possible to get them through winter as a small nuc.  However if you have brood to spare, bigger always better when it comes to bees and winter. 

Due to moisture issues, I would be hesitant to stack nucs on top of nucs.  Good insulation is a better way to conserve heat IMO.  If you want to get into extreme pampering, there is always electric heat  8-)