Just caught a swarm, what now??

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gentle001 

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Hey all I just caught a swarm, managed to get them into a hive......

What do i need to do now to get these bees off to the best start?

All advice welcome
 

Beeline 

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Well done! Hell that is getting late in the year. Just when you thought your hive was safe....must give mine another check for Queen Cells. ;)

Assuming you've given them a brood box of foundation, leave them for 2-3 days and only then feed.

BL
 

Skyhook 

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Well done! Hell that is getting late in the year. Just when you thought your hive was safe....must give mine another check for Queen Cells. ;)

Assuming you've given them a brood box of foundation, leave them for 2-3 days and only then feed.

BL
:iagree: but as a footnote, mine have just started throwing up QC's like there's no tomorrow.
 

Mike a 

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Check over the weekend to see how many frames they are using and keep them condensed as much as possible for now, reduce the entrance to 2-3 bee space. Then I would feed them starting next week so they use up most of the stores they swarmed with in the mean time, and also think about treating them as well.

What type of hive did you put them in and were the frames pre drawn or new sheets of foundation.?
 

Hebeegeebee 

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If it's your swarm or one of known provenance I would feed now.
 

gentle001 

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No they are not my bees no idea where they have come from to be honest!

I have put them in a national brood box with drawn foundation. I have put a reduced entrance in already.

what ratio syrup should i feed them?

Well happy with my catch today thank you for the advice everyone, much appreciated
 

Rosti 

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What syrup? depends whether you have got them on drawn comb or fresh foundation? If foundation then 1:1, drawn then 2:1. After a week or so review feeding though. Syrup wont last long in these temperatures and there should be reasonable forage around with the Balsam in and strong and the last of the Rose Bay still around. As such you may like to consider feeding fondant. There as a back-up if they need it and more stable in the medium term. Easy enough to make at home. R
 

gentle001 

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i have all the lovely ling heather out in bloom with me at the moment

you can make fondant? gonna sound stupid but how?
 

Vergilius 

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How big is the swarm? Ideally you should look to over-winter your swarm in a nuc or dummy-boarded hive as I doubt whether your fledgling colony would be able to heat a whole nat brood box over winter starting at this late point - particularly if it is a virgin swarm.

Having said this, if it is a large swarm, there is every chance that the colony could get off to a flyer ('scuse the pun) and fill a nat box with stores and bees ready for winter.

Even if the weather is nice and the bees are flying I would recommend feeding your swarm from now on ( well from 3 days after you caught them if you do not know their provenance) in order to give them the best chance of survival over winter.

Ben P
 

oliver90owner 

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What do i need to do now to get these bees off to the best start?

OK, feed for a few days, possibly. Just as long as it takes to find exactly what you have.

If there is a strong flow, there is little point in feeding. You should know that from your other colonies, even now.

In a weeks time you will know whether it was a prime or a cast. Could make a considerable difference. Either way you might want to consider requeening with a young mated queen. Prime - she has swarmed and may be superceded before the winter, or may be old and fail during the winter; cast - she may not be laying for two or more weeks and you have no idea of her traits (at least the queen from a prime swarm was a satisfacrory queen).

So, not much different than your other colonies - like are you feeding them at this present time?

Some are claiming a super of honey in around a week. With no brood as yet, your bees could easily be filling the brood with stores and young brood by the end of a week, if a strong prime and a good flow! May not as well, so it is down to you in you locale with your bees to assess and then ask questions.

Remember a kilo of wax (little or none to draw in your case, so you might even want to put on a super to get some drawn comb) is equivalent to anywhere between 5 and 15 kilos of honey and that the swarm is made up from all ages, but the very youngest, of flying bees and not all will be foragers just yet.

RAB
 

Phil280 

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Hi there...

Swarms this late in the year here are mostly what we call "hunger swarms". When they run out of food they pack their things and the complete colony leaves the hive. The same is the case if Varroa pressure is very high.

I would keep them in the cellar/or cool dark place for 3 days with nothing in the box. Then put them in a hive with foundation or empty comb and feed them 3-4 kg of syrup.

You should also treat for varroa before the first brood is capped.

Good luck!

Greets
Phil
 
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