Saturday, May 30, 2015

Capturing a swarm!!

We have experienced a new adventure in being backyard beekeepers.

Thursday we received an email from the beekeepers association stating that there was a swarm of bees in a tree and would someone come an remove it. Since the bees in question were in our neighborhood and one of our hives was empty, we responded to the email. (who knows, maybe they were our bees first place, hence the empty hive)

We rounded up an empty cardboard box some pruning shears, a ladder, and our bee veils and gloves and off we went.

The homeowner was very nice and happy to have the bees gone. I don't think he was impressed when Eric told him this was our first time capturing a swarm. The capture went text book perfect (according to Beekeeping for Dummies). Sorry the photos are not great. It was dusk and we were just using a phone camera. It couldn't be the photographer ;).

Swarm of bees in a live oak tree. We cut the branch with the bees and put them in a box.

Getting the bee filled branch out of the box.
Just chillin' in a cardboard box. Little do they know it is moving day!

The book said to put a sheet under the entrance and shake the bees onto the sheet and let them climb into the hive. So that it what we did.

Moving in to their new home. It took some of them all night to figure it out and they even had to survive a rain storm, but eventually they got it. I think they are happy about the new pad. Last night they were going crazy flying orientation flights. This morning we gave them some sugar water just to make sure they like it here so they stay and don't have to work so hard to build up their colony.