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Swarmy Carnolians - Early Demaree - Fix or Folly

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meikle 

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I started beekeeping in July 2008 with 2 Nucs from Mike Roberts, each headed by a Carnolian Queen. All went well initially and the colonies increased sufficiently to get through the winter. The early 2009 spring build up started early (for Aberdeenshire!!) but in early May both hives swarmed when there was plenty of space in the brood box and several frames remained unoccupied. As I had no spare hives, the swarms were farmed out to a local very experienced beekeeper, one of which returned to me to replace a colony which was severely depleted by continuous swarming. None of the experienced beekeepers who inherited my many swarms during last summer managed to keep the bees in the box. The final swarm departed in late August whilst on the hill for heather honey.

This year I have decided to be more proactive and today I have carried out a Demaree on a rapidly expanding colony headed by one of the original Carnolian Queens even though there is no evidence of QCs at this stage. No supers have been placed between the brood boxes just the queen excluder as there is no chance of any honey flow here for some weeks yet.

I would be interested in other members experiences of this method.

Richard
 

meikle 

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Feb 18, 2009
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Location
uk, Aberdeenshire
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
2
Yes, this is essentially what I have done except that I didn't wait for QC's to appear as I was advised by a local practitioner of the method that it was best to carry out the Demaree before the bees show signs of swarming. The main difficulty up here is the unpredictable weather may interfere with the subsequent checks for QC's - here's hoping!!

Richard
 

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