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A few questions from a novice

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lusklabs 

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I have been reading up on this subject for quite a while as well as going to local events to try to get some hands on experience. Everything to date has gone ok but that was until this morning when I was asked if I could assist in collecting a swarm. So off I went early this morning and probably by more good luck than judgement I retrieved a swarm from a conifer and brought it back home - so far so good.

Upon reflection of the days events, a bit of panic and doom and gloom has set in a little as I feel that I may have made a few mistakes. I hope you may be able to advise. :)

1.First of all I put the feeder on top of the frames in the brood box, looking at it this didnt seem to look right and as the holes in the feeder didnt line up with those in the crown board I thought I would cut off two pieces of wood, add an empty super and then sit the feeder on top of the two pieces of wood. Because the crown board wouldnt fit, another empty super was added upside down and now the crown board fits. The swarm was tipped in, crown board fitted and roof put on. Have I done anything wrong doing it this way or am I making hard work of things ? (There is no queen excluder in place)

2. Curiosity getting the better of me late this afternoon, I removed the roof, had a quick peek in and there seems to be a lot of activity in the empty top super. The gauze on top of the crown board is covered in bees. Is this normal activity ?

3. Reading another post on here the person said that their swarm had gone through approx two litres of syrup in one day. I have also read on here that the bees should be left to settle in for a few days. I gave them about a pint and a half of feed when they were installed. So do I check and top the feeder up tomorrow or should I leave it for a few days ?

Apologies for the length of this but any advice / comments would be good.
 
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admin 

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Weather wise they will be fine with the crownboard high up,BUT they will possibly make a hell of a mess building comb in the space you have given them.

You need to put the feeder above the crownboard,and the crownboard above the frames with no space.

Feed wise you did not say how big the swarm was ?

If you put the crownboard below the feeder you can take the roof off as often as you like to checkup and refill the feeder.

I lost a colony over winter by doing what you have done because the temperature hit -8c
 

lusklabs 

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Thanks for the info Admin. Will modify this crown board so the holes line up with the feeder.

I would estimate the swarn was about 18 long x 6 inches wide.
 

Poly Hive 

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Well yes but how many frames did it cover is a better guide? The strength of colonies is best judged by frames as then it is a standard that most can judge by.

PH
 

sherwood 

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The rule of thumb is with any swarm that they will climb to the highest available poit and cluster there. You should therfore have left a passage to the highest super by putting in the two strips of wood you left a gap to enble them to get to the highest super and my guese is that you found them suspended from the crown board. So by making this mistake you have learned for next time. Best of luck
 

sherwood 

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correction to the above it should have read you should not have left a passage for them to get to the upper boxes
 

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