The swarm season is finally here. The cold spring we have been having has definitely set things back a few weeks, but yesterday afternoon I got my first call.
Obviously as a conscientious, well prepared and well organised beekeeper I had all my swarm catching kit in the car ready to go.
Being caught on the hop slightly I had to dash back to my apiary and load up the car, then I picked up my little boy from nursery. He got his own bee suit just a couple of weeks ago, so this was his very first swarm capture.
When we got there the bees were spread out on the grass, just 20ft from the parent colony living in the home owners chimney. My helper and I looked for the queen but never saw her, however the bees were pretty quickly marching into the box.
We popped next door to the pub to pick up takeaway fish and chips, and eventually staggered home an hour past the little ones bed time, exhausted but very happy.
I’ve decided that grass is probably about the worst situation to catch swarms from. They get all tangled up in it, they don’t march nicely, and you can’t pick them up and move them. I ended up poking them occasionally to keep them all moving, as they seemed content just to hang out in the grass outside the box entrance.