Welcome, Guest

Author Topic: Aborted Swarm  (Read 367 times)

Offline The15thMember

  • Global Moderator
  • Galactic Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 3447
  • Gender: Female
  • Traveler of the Multiverse, Seeker of Knowledge
Aborted Swarm
« on: May 07, 2023, 06:14:29 pm »
Yesterday my mom called me outside because one of my hives was swarming.  The bees were still in the air when I got there, and something was clearly off.  Instead of being a tight cloud of bees, there were bees EVERYWHERE, they were over the garage, in the garden, on the property next to us, and some really high up in the tree tops.  They couldn't seem to figure out where to go and for about 15 minutes they all just kind of flew around back and forth, and then they started returning to the landing board of their hive, where they started fanning and calling the rest of the bees back too.  In another 15-20 minutes, they had all just gone back in the hive. 

That same morning, this hive had a lot of workers fanning out in front of the hive, so I thought they had a queen out mating.  I waited and watched for a while, hoping to see her return, but I didn't see her and eventually the fanning stopped.  There was a small cluster of bees hanging under the stand, which I broke up, looking for a queen, but she wasn't in there either. 

What do you think was going on with all this?
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline Michael Bush

  • Universal Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 19150
  • Gender: Male
    • bushfarms.com
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2023, 07:04:12 am »
"You never can tell with bees."--Winnie the Pooh
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm en espanol: bushfarms.com/es_bees.htm  auf deutsche: bushfarms.com/de_bees.htm  em portugues:  bushfarms.com/pt_bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
-------------------
"Everything works if you let it."--James "Big Boy" Medlin

Offline Ben Framed

  • Global Moderator
  • Universal Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 10194
  • Mississippi Zone 7
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2023, 07:40:44 am »
I had the same experience a year or so ago. I found the marked queen outside the hive on the ground a couple feet away in the grass with a group of protection bees around her. Upon further examination it was clear the queen had a damaged wing, so without the queen being able to fly with the swarm, the bees went back home. I would suppose this would be a reason to clip queens?

Phillip
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline The15thMember

  • Global Moderator
  • Galactic Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 3447
  • Gender: Female
  • Traveler of the Multiverse, Seeker of Knowledge
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2023, 11:05:08 am »
I had the same experience a year or so ago. I found the marked queen outside the hive on the ground a couple feet away in the grass with a group of protection bees around her. Upon further examination it was clear the queen had a damaged wing, so without the queen being able to fly with the swarm, the bees went back home. I would suppose this would be a reason to clip queens?

Phillip
This queen hasn't mated yet (that I know of), so I hope there is nothing wrong with her that is preventing her from mating. 
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline gww

  • Super Bee
  • *****
  • Posts: 1874
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2023, 02:25:49 pm »
I think sometimes when the queen goes to mate, a whole bunch may leave the hive with her, chaperones?
I have read you can lose a hive this way but have not experienced it personally.
Cheers
gww

Offline The15thMember

  • Global Moderator
  • Galactic Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 3447
  • Gender: Female
  • Traveler of the Multiverse, Seeker of Knowledge
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2023, 02:31:01 pm »
I think sometimes when the queen goes to mate, a whole bunch may leave the hive with her, chaperones?
I have read you can lose a hive this way but have not experienced it personally.
Cheers
gww
That was my first thought when they were fanning in the morning.   
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline Ben Framed

  • Global Moderator
  • Universal Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 10194
  • Mississippi Zone 7
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2023, 03:52:10 pm »
I had the same experience a year or so ago. I found the marked queen outside the hive on the ground a couple feet away in the grass with a group of protection bees around her. Upon further examination it was clear the queen had a damaged wing, so without the queen being able to fly with the swarm, the bees went back home. I would suppose this would be a reason to clip queens?

Phillip
This queen hasn't mated yet (that I know of), so I hope there is nothing wrong with her that is preventing her from mating. 

I was referring to the old queen, the swarming queen.
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline The15thMember

  • Global Moderator
  • Galactic Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 3447
  • Gender: Female
  • Traveler of the Multiverse, Seeker of Knowledge
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2023, 04:01:56 pm »
I was referring to the old queen, the swarming queen.
Oh, well this hive is sort of swarming to death.  The mated queen swarmed on 4/15, and I put her in my poly hive, where she has been happily laying.  They swarmed again on 4/24 with a virgin who is now laying, and they swarmed again on 5/4 and I haven't checked on that queen yet. 
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline cao

  • Super Bee
  • *****
  • Posts: 1616
  • Gender: Male
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2023, 11:24:59 pm »
Just doing the bee math, original queen swarms on 4/15.  Assuming capped queencells.  Then virgin queen hatches in about 8 days.  Then it swarms on 4/24 while second virgin gets ready to go on mating flight(s).  That doesn't give much time for that queen to mate and start laying before leaving on 5/4.  Are there any eggs or brood left in the hive?

Offline The15thMember

  • Global Moderator
  • Galactic Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 3447
  • Gender: Female
  • Traveler of the Multiverse, Seeker of Knowledge
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2023, 11:49:59 pm »
Just doing the bee math, original queen swarms on 4/15.  Assuming capped queencells.  Then virgin queen hatches in about 8 days.  Then it swarms on 4/24 while second virgin gets ready to go on mating flight(s).  That doesn't give much time for that queen to mate and start laying before leaving on 5/4.  Are there any eggs or brood left in the hive?
I'm not really following what you are saying.  I'm assuming the 5/4 swarm has a virgin queen as well.  When I checked on this hive last, which was 5/5, there was 1 capped queen cell in there, and I didn't see a queen.  Only a little bit of capped brood. 
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline cao

  • Super Bee
  • *****
  • Posts: 1616
  • Gender: Male
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2023, 11:53:21 pm »
I was just saying that it would have been a quick turn around for a queen to be mated to swarm the last time.  But if you said that there was only capped brood with a capped queen cell then it seems a long time between swarms with virgins.  I guess if the original queen laid eggs in queen cells over the course of a week or so then that math works.

Offline The15thMember

  • Global Moderator
  • Galactic Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 3447
  • Gender: Female
  • Traveler of the Multiverse, Seeker of Knowledge
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2023, 12:10:42 am »
I was just saying that it would have been a quick turn around for a queen to be mated to swarm the last time.  But if you said that there was only capped brood with a capped queen cell then it seems a long time between swarms with virgins.  I guess if the original queen laid eggs in queen cells over the course of a week or so then that math works.
To be fair, I'm not sure there wasn't more than one virgin running around in there, since I also saw 2 hatched QCs.  I didn't see any queens, but that doesn't mean I didn't miss them. 
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline Ben Framed

  • Global Moderator
  • Universal Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 10194
  • Mississippi Zone 7
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2023, 01:10:34 am »
Quote
cao
I was just saying that it would have been a quick turn around for a queen to be mated to swarm the last time.  But if you said that there was only capped brood with a capped queen cell then it seems a long time between swarms with virgins.
That was kind of my thinking too. But with bees..... 🤷🏻‍♂️Funny things can happen.
Quote
The15thMember
When I checked on this hive last, which was 5/5, there was 1 capped queen cell in there, and I didn't see a queen.  Only a little bit of capped brood.

Reagan, from you answer, am I clear? No eggs on 5/5?

Phillip
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline The15thMember

  • Global Moderator
  • Galactic Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 3447
  • Gender: Female
  • Traveler of the Multiverse, Seeker of Knowledge
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #13 on: May 10, 2023, 08:49:57 am »
Quote
cao
I was just saying that it would have been a quick turn around for a queen to be mated to swarm the last time.  But if you said that there was only capped brood with a capped queen cell then it seems a long time between swarms with virgins.
That was kind of my thinking too. But with bees..... 🤷🏻‍♂️Funny things can happen.
Quote
The15thMember
When I checked on this hive last, which was 5/5, there was 1 capped queen cell in there, and I didn't see a queen.  Only a little bit of capped brood.

Reagan, from you answer, am I clear? No eggs on 5/5?

Phillip
Correct. No eggs, no larvae.
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

Offline The15thMember

  • Global Moderator
  • Galactic Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 3447
  • Gender: Female
  • Traveler of the Multiverse, Seeker of Knowledge
Re: Aborted Swarm
« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2023, 07:41:24 pm »
Just to follow up on this hive, I inspected them today and found no brood and no queen.  All I found was one capped queen cell, which I had seen in my previous inspection, far too long for a QC to not have hatched, so I opened it up.  At first I thought it was empty, but upon closer inspection, there was a small dead brown larva in the cell.  Answers some of the questions, but not all of them.  I reduced the hive down to 3 boxes, and put that extra queen I have right now on top of them using the Snelgrove board.  I'll combine them next week. 
I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air, I am she that walks unseen.

 

anything