The Durham BeeKeepers’ (opens in new window) listserv has been buzzing with news of swarm activity over the last couple of weeks. On Friday, when I was out at Matt Yearout’s yard, he received a call about a potential swarm at a friend’s house, and after finishing some queen marking, we went over to take a look. The swarm, or swarms, as we found out later, were nestled on a ivy-covered tree about 30 feet from the ground. After some phone calls to locate a ladder, Matt climbed the tree and swept the first swarm into a bucket, returning to capture the queen and second swarm later. Since we were planning to set up at the Durham Farmers’ Market (opens in a new window) the next day, we placed the first swarm in the observation hive, which spent the night in my living room.
After the rain passed on Sunday morning, I introduced the swarm to their new hive in my front yard. They had been busy at work, as bees are, already building comb in the observation hive. They will join the new package as the fourth hive…and I might start wearing my gloves when they start growing in size.