Thanks for the replies! Glad I didn't just dump them into my other colony then... sounds like it could be disasterous. I had heard I could use swarms to bolster weak colonies, but I wasn't sure what to do about the queen. I do have some deeps with foundation, none drawn, this is my first year! I can't get another bottom board or top until tomorrow, but I guess I don't want to leave them in the bucket with the screened top overnight. I squirted them down with sugar syrup and I think I'll find some plywood to make some kind of top and bottom to last until tomorrow. Can I block the entrance completely (since I'm just gonna use plywood), or should I leave it open a little (don't want to suffocate them)? I will also put a jar of sugar syrup upside down inside another empty super to feed them. Wow I'm probably in over my head but it sure is fun, thanks guys!
Okay let me clarify something here because I have actually done it. You can add a swarm to a hive that is weak and queenless. <--- Very important there.
I caught a swarm and never found the queen after waiting to long I added for frames with bees and the queen drectly to the hive. Since the bees in the hive had no queen they wouldn't be fighting to protect their current queen. So adding the frames with the queen helped them.
You could keep the bees temporaily in the bucket provided they won't overheat during the day. They ship package bees in boxes that can be a couple of days n some cases. So I would guess no more than 72 hours.
Don't worry about a bottom board. Cut the plywood to make a bottom and make the hive a top entance hive. When you get the bottom you want move the bees to it. Again make sure the bees won't get overheated. I would put popsickle sicks or pennies in the corner of the plywood to allow for air circulation.
They probably don't need the sugar syurp. Flowers are in bloom.
Welcome to the insanity, you are not in over your head. You just have to remember the doctors store your brain in the refrigerator in the mayo jar.