Charlie and I went to the monthly MVBA meeting last night and guess what we got? A swarm! Paul, a fellow member and all around superhero, had heard that we lost most of our new packages so, when he caught a swarm, he brought it for us! That is just about one of the nicest things anyone could do, don’t you think? Now I’m going to have to get pregnant again just so I can name a kid after him. Or maybe he’ll settle for a chicken or duck.
We didn’t get home until late and so left the bees in the van (in their swarm box) overnight. This morning, I set up the Snow White hive box on that pitifully empty hive stand. I brought out my camera and took a quick pic, then handed the camera off to Charlie. Apparently, my clumsy gloved hands must have hit a button or two because all of the photos came out horribly. I was able to edit a few of them enough to show you but they’ve all got that goofy over-edited look to them.
I’ll get some better pics of Paul’s swarm box after the straggler bees clear out but this will give you a general idea. It’s a cardboard box with a screen “window” for ventilation. The inside has a bit of wooden framing to keep the lid from collapsing during/after taping it up.
And, boy, does Paul love duct tape. A man after my own heart. It took me a while to fight the tape with my gloved hands. A brighter person would have just admitted defeat and taken off their gloves. But I’ve never been accused of being overly bright, now have I?
When I opened the box, there was a big ol’ gob hanging from one of the top flaps and building comb. Maybe I should have knocked that clump of bees directly into the hive but with four top flaps flying around, I figured my graceful self would end up dumping them all over the ground and, with my luck, the queen would be lost.
So I brushed the big clump back into the box, sprayed them with a bit of sugar syrup, and dumped them into their new hive box.
Out with the bees — and there were a lot of them — came several chunks of old comb Paul had put in the box. I rubber banded them into a few frames and got everything & everyone settled in.
While I was out there, I filled the boardman feeders on all the hives and stuck one on the new swarm as well. The bees are really sucking down the syrup this year but I guess it’s understandable. I don’t see much of anything blooming right now. We had fruit trees and other things blooming a few weeks ago but there’s nothing now.
Cross your fingers for this new hive, will ya?