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Author Topic: Swarm dates for Qld  (Read 3599 times)

Offline Bee North

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #40 on: March 02, 2019, 01:51:08 am »
Hi Max, or Bill or anyone from QLD!

New Bee here, in my second year. 3 Hives.

I have been watching this thread closely as I am in North QLD.

Just into my second year and I had one of my hives swarm end of December and another that wanted to swarm (lots of queen cells) which I split in the rain late January. Both my "main" hives are going strong again, unfortunatly the split isnt queen right. I gave it all the capped cells and 5 frames of brood, honey etc (Over a month no sign of queen or eggs) ....Im on a waiting list for a queen next week, i gave them another frame with capped brood and eggs all the same just in case!

I know (from what I have read) that they can be triggered to go any time of year but.... is it safe to say that swarming has eased off for the year? There hasnt been any swarm posts for a while?

Cheers
Adam

Offline Bamboo

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #41 on: March 02, 2019, 02:46:12 am »
Welcome Adam
I am a fair way south of you and Bill would be your go to guy as far as conditions up there. Unlikely to swarm now certainly not down here on SS Coast.
I assume you did a walkaway split on your hive that had all the queen cells? Did you transfer any qcs ? I have found when I split a hive and usually I'll take a couple of splits, I put the splits where the old hive was and move the queen rite hive to a new position in the apiary at least 4m or so away from it's original position more if you can. That way you get a lot of bees returning to the new splits. It is really important when you are doing your split that you find a frame with day old or so eggs, any older and they won't raise a queen. I don't transfer any frames that might have qcs on them as I can check and see if they are raising their own when I spot a new qc. Once they have  the qc I just leave them alone and come back in a month by that time you should see eggs and brood.
With all the rain you have had there is always the possibility that she was delayed in her mating flight and therefore might not be on schedule plus new queens are sometimes very shy and hard to find. I would have another look this week you might just have a laying queen. If not you have always got the one coming.
Good Luck
Mark

Offline Bee North

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #42 on: March 02, 2019, 04:09:34 am »
Hi Mark
Thanks so much for your quick response and splitting information!

Regarding the split, I sort of did the opposite. I couldnt find the queen as the day was pretty miserable, the hive was packed, and the bees...well lets say not entirly happy with me! So I shook them all down. Put 5 full frames of brood above the excluder and split them off the following day with all the queen cells (4, I think). I moved them a few metres away and left the original hive and queen in place. She got the forages.

A bit more to the story...Im not home. Im currently studying in Perth for a year and its hard being away from my girls - its killing me... Miss my wife and kids too of course!!

Good news and thank god i have a fellow beek keeping an eye on the girls for me. He is more experienced than me and did the inspection yesterday and found my original hive going gangbusters full of brood and full of uncapped honey. My second hive is the same. My third hive, the split is struggling. He took a frame of brood from the strong hive and gave it to the possibly queenless hive.

So your post  "Unlikely to swarm now certainly not down here on SS Coast" has put a smile on my dile. Its been a big learning curve.

So between the two of us we will see to the girls needs and if the queen arrives next week and the hive is queen right...well I have an empty nuc in the shed!

Lucky I have plenty of space because when I signed up with hive number one just over a year ago I was not aware how quickly they multiplied!

Cheers
Adam


Offline Bamboo

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #43 on: March 02, 2019, 05:01:27 am »
Hi Adam
Yeah know what it is like being away from home, have done a fair bit of travelling myself in the past and still do. No matter what you do when you are home as soon as you are far enough away not to be able to help, something goes wrong...water pump breaks down, septic overflows, water heater cooks itself..been there done that!! :smile:
 
Great that you have another beek taking care of things for you.

Had a situation bit the same a few weeks back, had a split that that just wasn't doing what it should i.e no queen no brood or eggs. Added a couple more frames of brood as a last ditch effort and checked a couple of weeks later to see if maybe I had just missed her, but still no eggs or brood. Cranky as so figured no queen.

So marked it down to combine with one of the other hives. Didn't get back to it for a week so had some newspaper ready to combine and lifted the lid and what a nice surprise...eggs and capped brood, shut it up and now lots of activity plus they have calmed down! So she must have been there the time before and I missed her. The thing is with splits I don't search for the queen per se  just a quick scan of frames, if eggs and capped brood, she must be there so shut them up quickly and let them get on with it. I try not to disturb splits till they need to go into a full size box.

Flow is slowing down here as it has been very dry although we did get 10mm last night so might get a bit of a kick on.

Hope it all works out well for you.
Cheers
Mark

Offline Bee North

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #44 on: March 02, 2019, 05:44:48 am »
Thanks Mate.

Offline eltalia

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #45 on: March 02, 2019, 06:14:16 pm »
Hi Max, or Bill or anyone from QLD!

New Bee here, in my second year. 3 hives.

I know (from what I have read) that they can be triggered to go any time of year but.... is it safe
to say that swarming has eased off for the year? There hasnt been any swarm posts for a while?

Cheers
Adam

Mornin' Adam.
Bit of an ask doing b'kpn by remote so I'd go with what the b'kp onsite
is up to as weather here whilst being the best of Wets for many a year
she is a bit of a dingo's breakfast foraging wise - migratory operators
would be having a field day, no worries.
If you not into caging the queen intermittantly over the Wet then consider
reducing a full width entrance to 4.5mm high in December, early Janurary
(normal year) as that sends a message which deters the bees from
absconding - an action more common than swarming as such during or
 immediately following long periods of rain.

Yes, the window for swarms built to Replicate is well past but as you found
in Janurary they'll use that option (or abscond) where there is a local problem
with the hivebody... it can be a simple as being offkilter allowing water to
lay about on the bottomboard.
One small help is to pick your day at this time of year if you're East of the Range,
working any strain in overcast fine conditions isn't going to go well.
West owns more frequent and longer windows but same applies as it's also a
bit chilly for them to own a happy disposition.

Gotta ask what is it you're studying JCU isn't offering?

Cheers.

Bill
-- 
https://www.abc.net.au/radio/programs/australiaallover/

Offline Bee North

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #46 on: March 02, 2019, 06:52:53 pm »
Hi Bill,
Thanks for all that, I was hoping to get a bite from you!

That wet period.... there was definitely a connection there for me this season for sure!! I think them being so congested during the period helps trigger them. Do you cage yours in during the wet? I am already dreading next year.

Im using NUPLAS hives as I thought living in the rainforest (Kuranda) plastic may help (rot/termites). They seal up very well and I have them on metal stands that I welded up and concreteed into the ground so they are well secure, high, and as dry as I can get them. They have slotted bottom boards. I have found they do warp a little making the frames tight which has become a bit of a pain.

I will be home for a bit in September and then finish the course mid December. I cant expect my fellow beek to spend all his spare time at mine though.

Mate I wish JCU offed my course but I am a mariner. I am currently doing my final year of study for my Master Unlimited qualification (Master Class 1)....so very few options: Fremantle, AMC (Tasmania) or Newcastle.

We do have a college in Cairns, complete with state of the art Simulator and everything else we need. When it was set up a number of years ago the original plan was to start with offering the smaller domestic qualifications and work up from there, hence the high standard of equipment. But with the funding required, and the Australian shipping industry downturn etc....They still only offer the domestic qualifications and I'm in Perth!

Cheers
Adam



Offline eltalia

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #47 on: March 03, 2019, 06:19:52 am »
Hi Bill,
Thanks for all that, I was hoping to get a bite from you!


Yeh well like us FNQ'rs are genourous with our time, to a fault even. heh.

Quote

That wet period.... there was definitely a connection there for me this season for sure!! I think them
 being so congested during the period helps trigger them. Do you cage yours in during the wet?
I am already dreading next year.

Seen plenty of Wets like this one just not of late, well not a monsoon so persistent. Having been raised
on the coast amongst the 'cane those lessons amongst b'kpn came around every year pretty much.
So no, caging happens as part of numbers reduction in late October through November then replaced
by entrance restrictors (full width @4.5mm high) going on maybe the week before Xmas.
 They get the message.
2018 caught us out with bushfires raging and then early rains with not enough of a break to get across
creeks to the outyard before the monsoon cone along, so the queens were still caged with the bees
 subsequently digging them free. None had absconded though when we were able to get there a few
weeks ago now, a lucky break for us.
Cage and then restrict is standard stuff for us, and I am convinced many others doing a true winter
which is just another type of dearth with clustering, no different really to a prolonged Wet like this one.

Your setup for Karanda reads as just the thing, watch the greenants as those buggers can hone in on
a whim then leave them alone for months. A solid attack over a couple of days will see the bees pingoff.
Can't offer any pointers on poly boxes as whilst I know plenty c'mrcls use them still today we only ever
 ran standard FD in wood. Retirement has seen us play with a few new (to us) concepts settling for long
langs (LLTBH) as cutcomb is where we are headed. The two Lang stacks are at the outyard and mainly
for a resource in barrier protection in case the home colonys do go titsup with disease...something that
 is getting more likely as each year passes by.

You're aiming high with a MMC-1, Adam... and likely much more time away when you have it - good
money though these days. Our company ran an engineering contract with ASL (Fremantle) on the east
coast and across to Broome including the Gulf so with lots of sea-time I know enough to be a dangerous
bloke at the wheel in shallow waters. The excuberance of youth at the expense of wisdom. heh.
Good Luck with the desk work now.

Cheers.


Bill

Offline Bee North

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #48 on: March 03, 2019, 06:15:02 pm »
Thanks for your time Bill!

Awsome...so location specific (which is exactly what I was missing). I had never even heard of numbers reduction strategies apart from splitting...most seem to be chasing number production!

Im happy to hear your girls were all ok. Great news!

This formum is so good for my procrastinating...back to the desk!

Cheers again.
Adam


Offline eltalia

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #49 on: March 04, 2019, 06:17:05 am »

I had never even heard of numbers reduction strategies apart from splitting...most seem to
 be chasing number production!

Tis all relevent to whatever your own thing is with b'keeping Adam, like pretty much
around the urbanised FNQ it can be "set an' forget" with attention to P&D inspections only
and swarm prevention.
Yet if studying how to manage (push) them to pollinate, or produce honey, then it *is* a
case of developing strategies. Building numbers to critical mass for "the season" - whilst
controlling swarming -  to then reduce numbers for the dearth is all in the mix, and sorts
the hopefulls from the doers.
I am reasonably certain posts have been made on these topics, maybe searching
"critical mass" will shed some insight if that too is an unfamiliar term?

No problem in providing what I can Adam, happy to.

Cheers.

Bill.

Offline max2

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #50 on: March 07, 2019, 01:19:42 am »
Good to see you up and running Bill!
I have been away for nearly 3 weeks and when I got home there was no internet.
Looks like it is OK now, thanks to a new modem

Offline Bee North

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #51 on: August 02, 2019, 09:17:40 pm »
And so it begins!

My neighbour (literally Bill) had his strongest hive swarm on Thursday!

We have had patchy weather with more sun than rain, the girls are working hard when the suns out and as previously mentioned cadaghi is in flower and lots more i believe.

One would think this is a bit early though...They had room in the supers (2 x) , but as i said a very strong hive.

Adam

Offline Bamboo

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #52 on: August 02, 2019, 11:55:22 pm »
Bees doing what they do.
But like you say seems early. But with all the warmer weather, hottest July etc, hard to pin seasons down now...times is changing.

Offline Bee North

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #53 on: August 03, 2019, 12:30:58 am »
Hi Mark

.... "times is changing" too true!

One has to go with a bit of instinct i think.

Before i left my girls went from sleepy to full throttle in the brood department and bells started ringing.

So i ordered a number of queens for one replacement and a few splits when i get back home (end of September)to slow them down a bit.

My mate will keep an eye on them until then and super as required. Hopefully they stay put until then.

Rgds
Adam

Offline eltalia

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #54 on: August 03, 2019, 08:25:06 pm »
And so it begins!

My neighbour (literally Bill) had his strongest hive swarm on Thursday!

We have had patchy weather with more sun than rain, the girls are working hard when the suns out and as previously mentioned cadaghi is in flower and lots more i believe.

One would think this is a bit early though...They had room in the supers (2 x) , but as i said a very strong hive.

Adam
I'm off to check the outyard this arvo buuut given the overcast weather last week
I doubt there'll be more to do than look about and maybe pull a few kilos.

Just dropping in to say if any of our little group get a swarm issue it is news!
This as we all share the philosophy swarms and the work bees put into them
are wasted energy better put to growth and/or recovery from dearth.
All bees will get on the swarm wagon once conditions become favourable.
Us, the b'keep, only waking up to it once QCs are formed...IF we get to see
them, capped.

Cheers...

Bill

Offline Bee North

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #55 on: August 10, 2019, 11:57:39 pm »
Times are Changing!

Ok, so there is a bit more to add...Cairns is swarming.

My neighbour who's hive swarmed just lost another one. He went to our bee club meeting last weekend and everyone is aparently losing swarms.. but its winter.

He inspected my hives today, as I am still away at school:

Out of my three hives two are ding well, but the one i supered only 3 weeks ago is interesting. He couldnt find the queen and there are two capped queen cells.

He said the hive is full of drones disproportionally, with a lot more drone brood to come.

Three weeks ago that hive was doing beautifully. The numbers were expanding rapidly and I threw a super on it just as the frames were covered with bees. The brood pattern was exceptional, i took a frame and gave it to weakest hive then. The pattern was solid, not patchy at all.

This queen was home raised last Febuary after it swarmed.

I dont know if its a supersedure, if the hive swarmed or is about to. He will check on them in a couple of weeks time. Doesnt two cells "usually" indicate supersedure over swarming? He couldnt find her though and I marked her!

Its as if after all the rain we had over the last 12 months, the girls are taking the first oportunity to swarm. Generally speaking the hives are not over crowded, they are still low on strores and its still winter! This is their first snif of a flow since before christmas.

Cheers
Adam


 


Offline eltalia

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #56 on: August 11, 2019, 04:38:53 am »
Adam....maaate you gotta move frames around (broodnest), making space isn't
good enough. Into mine today and off up to the outyard tomorrow..
Remember too we run QRs at this time, for exactly the initiate swarming on
forage coming in strong.
See my other post on dud queens as I didn't see this post earlier.

Cheers...

Bill

Offline Bee North

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #57 on: August 11, 2019, 05:14:44 am »
Thanks for the posts Bill

If only I was home!!!

.....so frustrating. Its not ideal being away this time of year and you can only ask so much of others regarding management.

What else to say?

Rgds
Adam

 







 

Offline max2

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #58 on: October 03, 2019, 01:39:04 pm »
4.10. 2019 - I hear of large swarms around maleny. We are usually a week or so behind. Time to check again the hives.

Offline max2

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Re: Swarm dates for Qld
« Reply #59 on: October 15, 2019, 04:06:09 am »
15.10. - I went to see a beekeeping mate of mine near Glasshouse and there were two little swarms in his yard."Not worth catching"  we both said.

I got home and there was a small swarms - not much bigger - just 5 m from my door...so I put it in a little box. Probably "not worth the effort"  :embarassed: