Beekeeping Fetchies

17 watchers
Jun 2022
10:28pm, 11 Jun 2022
108 posts
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Boffin
Probably wise, doesn't sound like the kit is worth offering on - also no problem getting good kit new (and clean!) 👍
Jun 2022
11:07pm, 11 Jun 2022
90,065 posts
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Hanneke
These golden hives are a bit rare...
Sort of a cross between a log hive and a Warrée I think... Good for minimal intervention natural beekeeping, good for the bees, still allows for some assistance if it were necessary.
Encourages propolising and you can take the odd frame of honey.
May 2023
9:14am, 27 May 2023
3,452 posts
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Cheeky’s Dad
I have an issue with an independent minded swarm. They initially swarmed on Monday. I didn’t have a spare hive but got the swarm into a cardboard box and kept it in the barn overnight. They went into s hive on Tuesday evening and seemed to settle but swarmed again on Thursday morning. I discovered them in the roof of the barn but was just going out so hot the bulk of them into another box which I left propped open for the stragglers. When I got home I put them back in the hive with a feeder of light syrup to (I hoped) bribe them to stay, but no, yesterday they decamped to a stack of 4 spare supers I had in the barn ready to use. The top 2 have old comb in them the bottom two are empty and there’s just a sheet of old cardboard over the top.

So, if they are happy in the supers with the comb, it’s a bit of a pest but they can have them for now. I could do with using the empty two. Either way they can’t live in the barn! So my thought was to move the two supers with the comb to the new hive, which is about 30 - 40 metres away and leave them to it.

What are everyone’s thoughts? I don’t want to mess them around too much and provoke them to leave but they are already showing too much love for the barn 😁 So move them asap? Give them a couple of days? Any suggestions?
May 2023
11:03am, 27 May 2023
103,945 posts
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Hanneke
I would move them say 10 metres a day... Until they are on the new hive.
May 2023
9:26pm, 27 May 2023
3,460 posts
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Cheeky’s Dad
That’s a great shout Hanneke, thanks
Jun 2023
10:30am, 30 Jun 2023
243 posts
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Boffin
Sorry, not been on Fetch for a long time 😔
How did you get on with your independent minded hive?
Bees often like old comb and can object to a nice new tidy hive!
I had an interesting feral swarm which refused all regular re-homing attempts.. only gitvthem to stay put by providing them with a couple of frames of BIAS.
Jul 2023
3:51pm, 2 Jul 2023
244 posts
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Boffin
Bees often like to do thier own thing...couple of weeks ago a neighbour had a swarm on their chimney breast

Not having a ladder to hand, I left the bees a nuc box with some old frame in close buy and baited it with frame cappings.

The bees raided the cappings, yet chose to stay on the chimney for several days.
It was during test warm spell, so they were happy.

Couple of days later I go over and have a look; bees not in the nuc and largely left the chimney - figured they had moved on and was packing my gear away.

Then I hear them- swarming again although not settling anywhere- seemed to be gathering to a tree, but no, they opt to puddle on the ground!


Scoop them up best I can and pop them in the nuc..


They have other ideas... guess the queen was still in the grass...

Went away to get more gear - had planned to set a brood Bix with frames and a couple of frames of BIAS on top of the puddle bees...

Nope, they moved off to a tree

At least allowing ne to catch them usual fashion 🙂
Given I had gone back with BIAS frames- fugured they may as well keep them - it would at keast encourage them to stay.

Worked a treat 🙂 left them alone for a couple of days then moved the box to a better spot in their garden.
Just popped back now to have a look. Bees still there although the Queen must have left or injured as they have drawn new Queen cells from eggs on the BIAS frames.
I'll leave them alone for a month now and allow the Virginia Queen to mate and start laying before I disturb them again. 🙂
Jul 2023
4:07pm, 2 Jul 2023
105,742 posts
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Hanneke
I'd hazard a guess their queen was clipped...
Jul 2023
4:54pm, 3 Jul 2023
245 posts
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Boffin
I doubt the queen was clipped Hanneke as they were able to swarm in the first instance.🤔
I strongly suspect the bees were a feral colony. Further, I think the swarm actually moved on from the nuc leaving just enough bees to nurse the BIAS I left them, and the majority of the bees now in the nuc emerged from the bias frames I left them 🤔
Alternatively it could have been a cast swarm - possibly even without queen, or in any case they figured they would have a go making a new queen 🤔
For sure, it was a very oddly behaving swarm, and a fraction of the size one would expect..
...and still a small colony despite having two full frames of BIAS ultimately full of bees - that number of bees and a swarm should be clambering over each other for space in a nuc... as it was there were not enough bees to warrant expanding into a hive.
Jul 2023
5:30pm, 3 Jul 2023
105,815 posts
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Hanneke
Boffin, I think you are right, may be a cast with either a clueless queen or one that died/was killed. In any case, they are making a new queen so 🤞

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So there's me and Winniefree, are there any other fetchies either keeping bees or wanabee beeke...

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