Swarm 6-18-2018

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summerfield bee
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2018 4:30 pm

Swarm 6-18-2018

Post by summerfield bee » Wed Jun 20, 2018 1:41 pm

Heads up! Bees are still is swarm mode! Please note...I am a very beginner bee keeper, so I did not know what to look for as far as queen cells, etc. in the original hive that was installed from a package of bees in April. I noticed this huge group of bees in my apple tree just 20 feet from the original hive. Thankfully, they stayed in my yard! We know they were in the original hive no more than two days prior, so they were not there very long. I immediately gave Rob a call and he came right out, shook them into a bucket with queen reducer lid after we misted them with sugar water. It took 4-5 really good shakes to get the majority. He installed them into a new hive with old drawn frames to hopefully attract them, taped a queen excluder on the bottom to be a queen includer, and placed a feeder beside the hive. We never saw the queen, but since the majority was together and fanning some it was hopeful she was in the group. They stayed outside the new hive all afternoon and all evening just hanging on looking like they were ready to fly off any minute. I came out the next morning and the front was clear and I saw bees coming in and out...I am hopeful they like their new home! I have replaced the quart jar of sugar water outside their hive two times since then (they have taken 2 1/2 quarts in 2 1/2 days).

Question...Should I keep replacing the sugar water as it runs out???

So there are still a few (20 ish) scout bees on the apple tree that haven't gotten the hint to move, but I'm hoping they will.

After the transition of the swarm to the new hive, Rob opened up my original hive...I was worried it was emptied and when I had opened it up about 10 days before the bottom frames were barely drawn out at all with little to no eggs, larvae, anything. He popped it open and there were several queen cells (a few got damaged upon opening) and a queen emerged out of a damaged cell, back end first then walked down into the frame! She was small and maybe two days premature, but she was fully formed. So, that just goes to show I had no idea what I was seeing 10ish
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days before very well would have been queen cells beginning. Now it is a waiting game to see if that original hive will requeen itself and to see if the hive next door likes it's new home! I never thought I would be so stressed about these little bees...I want them to like our home and stay put!

I am SO THANKFUL to Rob for coming out immediately and helping me!! Now I at least know what queen cells look like and what that could mean for a hive...they are getting ready to swarm! He is going to recheck the new hive for eggs on Saturday to see if it is looking good and switch some new frames out for the old drawn ones if they like their home.

NOTE! Also, a friend of mine out in Elkin had a hive that swarmed THE SAME DAY as mine! So, these bees...they are still a swarmin'!

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