Natural Beekeeping

Top Bar ApiRevolution has begun! Lets make some Top Bar Hives and let them be pesticide free on their own natural comb! Che Guebee is a rebel bee fighting for the survival of the Biodiversity we all depend on and which is seriously endangered by deforestation and mono-crop agriculture!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

First swarm and a laying worker

 I've caught my first swarm yesterday :) My wife was the one who told me that a few bees tried to get into the house yesterday and even into our car. I immediately suspected Scout Bees searching for a new home. We were inside the car on our way to do weekly shopping so I thought to check the hives later but my wife insisted to do it right away and so I went into the apiary to check ... 5 seconds later I was running back to the house to get my swarm catching basket :)
Bees fanning at the entrance, sign that the Queen is inside

One of the 6 colonies which came out of the winter had no Queen. She probably died during the winter which can happen. I decided to give them an brood comb with eggs from another colony in hope they will make a new Queen. I inspected the hive yesterday and all I could see is Drone brood and several eggs per cell! Sure sign of a Laying Worker! This colony had issues last year as well. I gave them a chance to get on with new eggs but even now they seem not able to do the right thing. I will very likely destroy this colony since they are only getting weaker, not many bees left.

4 comments:

  1. you'll need to give the colony a comb of brood a week for the next 3-4 weeks before the brood pheromone suppresses the laying worker.

    The other option is dump all the bees out somewhere away from the hive and the laying worker will probably have never left the hive some will not be able to find its way back.

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  2. Thanks for the advice. I cant give them so many brood combs. It will only weaken my other colonies. By the way when I opened the hive there were only a handful of bees left so I took out all the comb and gave it to my new split. In about 4 days they were all dead.

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  3. Did you make your swarm catching basket? It's beautiful

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  4. Sorry to disapoint you but im far from skilles to make such lovely basket. But I will try to make use of all the Willow on my farm and make willow baskets and skeps instead.

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