Too many bees?

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psafloyd 

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I've had even more swarms thrown off one of my hives and I wonder if I have too many colonies in the same place? There are currently six viable colonies, though a couple are quite small and will be reunited and HM despatched.

I know it's a swarmy year, but I'm wondering if there is a bit of a dearth around here for once (elderflower still in flower and blackberry not out yet, but very nearly).

So, might they be acting like this to protect the colony and send out an expeditionary force to find somewhere with better forage.

Normally around here the forage is good from May through to mid-September, but there isn't much in the supers in the place I am getting all the hassle.

Any insight from experienced beeks much appreciated. And yes, I am doing inspections and have split and reunited on a number of occasions (my timing has been better than last year) but still they are in and out like a jack in the box.

Worrying, as I go on hols next week and the poor people adjacent to my bee plot are petrified of bees. But I am moving at least three colonies tomorrow morning after I have closed them up tonight (assuming I don't need to reunite some of them with hives that have swarmed and are lacking in bees).

Muchas gracias. not worthy
 

flemage 

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This my following comment is complete BS with no foundation what so ever..........but perhaps because it has been a very bad winter and summer before that, the bees know that they need to re-populate and or there are likely opportunity's to find new homes where others have died out?

:sorry:
 
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This my following comment is complete BS with no foundation what so ever..........but perhaps because it has been a very bad winter and summer before that, the bees know that they need to re-populate and or there are likely opportunity's to find new homes where others have died out?

:sorry:
I could say the wrong type of crystals are being used.... as for now I will believe any plausible OR implausible explanation as to why the bees are ignoring years of sage advice from the experts wot write big books on the subject!

Them bees is behaving a bit weird.. it has to be said!!!!

Foundation less beekeepering... now that an idea !!not worthynot worthynot worthy
 

derekm 

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This my following comment is complete BS with no foundation what so ever..........but perhaps because it has been a very bad winter and summer before that, the bees know that they need to re-populate and or there are likely opportunity's to find new homes where others have died out?

:sorry:
Stress does cause species from apple trees to humans to increase sexual activity(end of WW2 = Baby boom). So its not BS. The "know" bit is a bit anthropomorphic but its fine to me as metaphor
 
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Stress does cause species from apple trees to humans to increase sexual activity(end of WW2 = Baby boom). So its not BS. The "know" bit is a bit anthropomorphic but its fine to me as metaphor
My bees behaviour is making me feel very stressed... but thinking about it Thanks Derekm... an antidote!!!:winner1st:
 

Finman 

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Actually it is easy to see, do hives have enough pastures.
Of course you see it from supers.

Anothder way is to look how bees fly to home. If they abdomen is hanging, and they drop on landing board, they have full load.

If bees return to home as slim and fly directly through entrance, it means that food sources are far away and their nectar load will be consumed during flying trip.

You see this only when you have hives in different places what you may compare.

Today I just took 2 hives away from one place, because part of bees arrived home with light loads. In most places hives all fly with maximum load. Raspberry is in full bloom.
 

Compostcritter 

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Smarmy year? I don't think it is, we'll certainly not in Northamptonshire! 2012 well there is another story......
 

psafloyd 

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My bees behaviour is making me feel very stressed... but thinking about it Thanks Derekm... an antidote!!!:winner1st:
I know it isn't just me, as so many others are having problems. But I wondered if there was a local source of stress for them beyond weather.
 

psafloyd 

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Actually it is easy to see, do hives have enough pastures.
Of course you see it from supers.

Anothder way is to look how bees fly to home. If they abdomen is hanging, and they drop on landing board, they have full load.

If bees return to home as slim and fly directly through entrance, it means that food sources are far away and their nectar load will be consumed during flying trip.

You see this only when you have hives in different places what you may compare.

Today I just took 2 hives away from one place, because part of bees arrived home with light loads. In most places hives all fly with maximum load. Raspberry is in full bloom.

Thanks, Finman, you're quite right. I'll look again, but they have seemed to be arriving laden, missing the landing strip and buzzing round for a second go...
 

keith pierce 

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Its just a swarmy hive. I have over 30 hives in the one apiary and only about 6 have made any attempt to swarm so far. Mostly tree nectar source.
 

beeno 

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Actually it is easy to see, do hives have enough pastures.
Of course you see it from supers.

Anothder way is to look how bees fly to home. If they abdomen is hanging, and they drop on landing board, they have full load.

If bees return to home as slim and fly directly through entrance, it means that food sources are far away and their nectar load will be consumed during flying trip.

You see this only when you have hives in different places what you may compare.

Today I just took 2 hives away from one place, because part of bees arrived home with light loads. In most places hives all fly with maximum load. Raspberry is in full bloom.
Hi Finman,
So, pleased that you have confirmed my observations on hanging abdomens when the bees return from foraging. Another way of observing it is watching the pert bees leaving the hive to go foraging - no hanging abdomens then. I think there is a flow on in my part of the country and I believe people thinking there is not is due to the bees having cleaned the hives out when swarming!
 

pargyle 

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Its just a swarmy hive. I have over 30 hives in the one apiary and only about 6 have made any attempt to swarm so far. Mostly tree nectar source.
Lovely Apiary Keith ... nicely pruned frui trees as well !
 

MuswellMetro 

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Smarmy year? I don't think it is, we'll certainly not in Northamptonshire! 2012 well there is another story......
agreed, had a few extra supercedures on late 2012 queens but otherwise quite normal, except when i forgot to add extra supers in the OSR flow (didn;t spot the yellow field with 500yds, my excuse it is was behind a wood)
 

Finman 

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I keep 2-4 adult hives in same place.

For winter I collect my 20-30 hives to the cottage yard.
.
 
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