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Joined
Jun 14, 2023
Messages
299
Reaction score
321
Location
Surrey, England
Hive Type
National
Number of Hives
14
Hello, everyone.
I'm close to the end of a very good 6-month beginners beekeeping course, run by my local BKA.
I have 2 colonies. 1 small I caught in my neighbours garden, attracted by bait hives I created. The 2nd is a larger colony, which I acquired from my BKA, and is also a caught swarm.
I'm using National hives, and I'm Top bar-curious.

Moved out of London last year, to Surrey. We prioritised looking for a house with a large garden, specifically so I could keep bees.
 
Hi Paul what area are you in, keep an eye on your swarms as they are a lottery in terms of what you get. Keeping bees in your garden is good and you can learn plenty just watching, however be aware of issues that can occur and put feelers out for out apiary possibilities.
 
Hi Paul what area are you in, keep an eye on your swarms as they are a lottery in terms of what you get. Keeping bees in your garden is good and you can learn plenty just watching, however be aware of issues that can occur and put feelers out for out apiary possibilities.
I'm in Surrey. What issues do you have in mind?
My smaller colony were robbed out this week. Created an anti-robbing screen, which the bees quickly adapted to.
 

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Issues……….Stinging you the neighbours more importantly SWMBO😉
End of flows bees become inquisitive/feisty not only your house but again the neighbours. Knowing when to leave well alone often comes with experience!
 
Issues……….Stinging you the neighbours more importantly SWMBO😉
End of flows bees become inquisitive/feisty not only your house but again the neighbours. Knowing when to leave well alone often comes with experience!
Noticed bigger colony has been very grumpy in past week. They now have a top feeder with 1:1 syrup, but doesn't seem to have changed anything.
 
Noticed bigger colony has been very grumpy in past week. They now have a top feeder with 1:1 syrup, but doesn't seem to have changed anything.
Can I ask why your feeding there’s a good flow on atm, you don’t want syrup mixed up in any possible crop.

Swarms are a lottery in regards to what you’ll get, some can be good and others really should be assessed as much as possible before being given to beginners. If they continue to be a pain or more than you can handle I’d ask the association for help. Good quiet bees are available from reputable suppliers.
 
Noticed bigger colony has been very grumpy in past week. They now have a top feeder with 1:1 syrup, but doesn't seem to have changed anything.
Are there sufficient stores in the hive to last until the next inspection? If so I wouldn't consider feeding.
 
Are there sufficient stores in the hive to last until the next inspection? If so I wouldn't consider feeding.
I'm suspicious they may have been robbed. Also it's a caught swarm. Upon last inspection (Saturday) there were stores, but 4 brood box frames are still just foundation. Will now more on Saturday. Ok think they are a strong colony.
My fears about them having been robbed may be wrong.
The smaller colony was robbed, hence the anti-robbing guard, all their nectar stores were cleared out.
 
Swarm I caught from neighbours garden are super quiet, passive and lovely..
Plenty of brood on the way.
When I caught her she was an unmated queen. I'm really attached to this colony.

Can I ask why your feeding there’s a good flow on atm, you don’t want syrup mixed up in any possible crop.

Swarms are a lottery in regards to what you’ll get, some can be good and others really should be assessed as much as possible before being given to beginners. If they continue to be a pain or more than you can handle I’d ask the association for help. Good quiet bees are available from reputable suppliers.
 

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