Swarm Season Starts

 My car packed for swarm-catching with both a ten-frame hive and a nuc.

My car packed for swarm-catching with both a ten-frame hive and a nuc.

The middle of April used to be tax season for me. Since I started beekeeping, the middle of spring is more importantly swarm season, when bees split off from their mother hive and set off to establish a new colony.

I went on my first call this morning but the bees had moved on. They had chosen a blooming holly tree for their temporary home, a good bee choice since holly has a great deal of pollen. Only issue is that swarms don't collect food when they are on the move; they are waiting for scout bees to come back and communicate they have found a wonderful spot for a new home. While bees wait for that news, they have left their mother hive gorged in honey so not only are they sluggish but they aren't interested in collecting pollen just yet.

Someone contacted me several weeks ago interested in catching a swarm but he didn't have an extra hive, a bee suit or transportation, all three major components needed when swarm-catching.  If you can only focus on one, get a bee suit and be ready for the call. Bees don't wait!

Charlotte