Master Gardener Drew called this evening regarding a swarm of bees on the fence near their hives. He wasn’t sure if it came from his hives or somewhere else as the neighborhood had other beekeepers and also many feral hives in trees. So my dad and I went over to check it out. The swarm was on a fence about chest-high and it was very simple to move them into a hive, and good thing we got there in time because right after we got all the bees in it started to rain pretty hard.
This was our first swarm of the year though there have been swarms happening the weeks prior when we had the upper 60’s to 70’s weather. While hiving this swarm we found FOUR small, new virgin queens!!! This wasn’t the main swarm with the original queen, that must have happened a week ago.
The bees were pretty confused. Fanning weakly and walking around in different directions. So we placed all four queens inthe queen catcher into the box to let them choose which one they want.
Sometimes when you have a swarm with multiple queens, the bees will ball the queens they do not like but these bees just ignore them. It took a while but they finall started to move towards one and we removed the other three which we’ll use in splits that we’ll be doing this weekend with our strong hives.