Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Late September SWARM

For the second year in a row...

...A Swarm showed up in the yard during the last week in September.  Today in fact.  A day after we decide we need a swarm to save Gumption.  How about that!  I estimate the swarm to be less than 3 pounds.  Smallish darker bees.  I didn't see the Queen or any drones.  I eased handfuls of bees into the nuc until finally they took to fanning and crawling into the nuc.  Good indicators the Queen was in the hive.

As you can see in the video it clustered well within reach for once.  The plant cage had to have a big hole cut into it but that's much easier than climbing trees. 

The swarm landed on the post for the basil
The only hitch is halfway into hiving the swarm robbing broke out in the entire apiary.  Talk about bedlam!  Had to stop what i was doing with the swarm to close off all the other hives.  So happy to have little top entrances on all the hives.  Once the bottoms entrances were closed the bees could easily defend themselves at those top ones. 

The big question here is were did this swarm come from.  Last year it came from somewhere else and at the moment i think this year is the same.  Yet, there remains one hive left to inspect this month.  The swarm could have come from her.  Tomorrow i'll check.

Right now the bees are in a medium nuc with five drawn frames.  Tomorrow i'll newspaper combine them with Gumption.  Who, coincidentally, is last years Late September Swarm.

Also, all the Screened Bottom Boards in the apiary have now been closed for Winter.


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