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How big is a swarm?

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Poly Hive 

Queen Bee
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A good swarm in my experience will cover 6-8 frames. Langstroth ones.


A medium one some 5 National ones.

Given this, it pays to be prepared to accommodate them in comfort.

I would not expect a decent one to need anything as small as a five frame National Nuc.

Just a heads up that that ball of bees may be a bit bigger when hived than you expect.

PH
 

merylvingien 

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Interesting, the swarm i got last weekend is a half size commercial type box that i made up, 5 frames. They are covering all 5 frames!

I thought it best to pop them in there instead of straight into a gurt big full size commercial, as i understand, before any more bees are produced the numbers of the swarm drop off?

Its all hit and miss, and i will make all the same mistakes as the thousands that have come before me, but if you dont try, you dont learn.
 

Finman 

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2 kg swarm occupye one langstroth box.
That is a normal premium swarn in my hives.
 
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taff.. 

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I have an empty 5 frame nuc box at the back of my apiary, just sitting there with either one or two drawn frames.

I never thought any bees would move in and occupy it as I've read so many times that a 5 frame nuc box is not big enough as a bait hive.

this afternoon I went over to inspect my bees, and there's only hundreds of bees flying out of the nuc, and lots of pollen going in :sifone:

A newbee (Foobahmagic) is coming over with one of his hives tomorrow to transfer them over, I cant wait to see how much brace comb they've built off the crown board in a couple of days :rolleyes:
 

oliver90owner 

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Possible trouble is I think 14 x 12. Sorry to all standard National users and others who assume a nuc is always a 5 frame National.

My nucs are now all 14 x 12s so are nigh-on equivalent to a standard National as far as a swarm is concerned. If they cover all 6 frames (yes six, a tight fit in the box, but if foundation for a swarm it matters not), so about equivalent to nine frames of a standard brood box.

So, for me it needs to be a big swarm to need anything any bigger than a nuc for collection!

Regards, RAB
 

merylvingien 

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So when will it be safe for me to take a peek at the frames of my new arrivals, i am dying to see how they are doing...

I know they are drawing the foundation out, cause when i put the feeder in the other day i could see down between the frames and can see where they are working.
 

MJBee 

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I would leave them alone, apart from topping up the feeder, for at least a week, more if you can. Let them get on with drawing the frames and queeny to come back into lay. Once they have brood they will stay put.
 

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