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Late season colony - got a hope?

 
Michael Cox
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Location: Kent, UK - Zone 8
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I randomly discovered a swarm established in a friends tree. Unusually they have already drawn out a substantial amount of comb in the open, just hanging from a tree branch. Looks to be around 7 standard deep frames worth, lots of bees flying.

They are from a long established 10+ years colony living in a chimney, so good survivor stock.

If I gathered them would they have a hope of surviving the winter? I was thinking about putting them in my empty perone hive pretty much as they are, still hanging from their branch. I'd feed them like mad for what remains of the warm weather an keep fingers crossed.

The main problem collecting them is the height of the branch - a good 12ft off the ground and nothing stable to lean against. I was thinking about setting up a small scaffold tower.

Also, the homeowners say they get lots o swarms every year and would be happy for me to set up a couple of bit hives in the spring

Mike
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Colony on tree branch
 
David Livingston
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Location: Anjou ,France
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Feed Feed Feed Feed only thing you can do
 
tel jetson
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they would have more hope in your hive than the do out in the open. if you could get it into a Perone intact, I would think they'd have a fighting chance.
 
Michael Cox
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Location: Kent, UK - Zone 8
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Thanks guys - I'll give the transfer a crack.

My thoughts at the moment go something like this:

Snip all the surrounding branches away so I can get to the colony properly.
Trim the far end of the branch, leaving 12" or so to hold.
Cut the supporting branch and lower the colony into a sturdy cardboard box.
Close box + tape seams
Wrap in a big sheet and move to the back of the car

Once home, place box inside the perone hive
Open box and cut as much cardboard away as possible, leaving the comb supported by the remains of the stick and box. They can build more comb just including the stick and box into the structure.

Put lid on and walk away

Feed, Feed, Feed

Sound reasonable?
Questions then - will they cope taped up in a box at night for a few hours, or do I need to provide ventilation for them? I've moved hives before without worrying, but only over shorter distances.
 
tel jetson
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sounds fine. if you could manage it, suspending the branch and comb from the top bars would be ideal. a helper would probably be handy.
 
Martin Miljkovic
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so how are your swarms doing ?
 
I agree. Here's the link: https://richsoil.com/wood-heat.jsp
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