We had a bit of unexpected excitement out in the orchard last week.
The husband’s bees swarmed . . . TWICE!
The first time, the husband and bee-keeping friend, were too busy dealing with the swarm to take photos (and I was still fast asleep in bed!), so the above is of the second swarm. Luckily, the husband had equipped himself, earlier in the year, with a second, smaller, hive (that he painted bright red) so on the morning of the first swarm our two amateur bee-keepers were able to knock the clump of buzzing business, and it dropped (more or less) into the open hive. A fair number of bees did land outside
but since the queen was safely in the box, it was only a matter of hours before the ones outside went inside.
Anyway . . . the husband was really pleased, because it meant the colony in his main hive was thriving, and the captured swarm meant he’d be able to have two hives up and running this year. However, the following morning, the bees in the main hive swarmed a second time!
Same photo as above, just zooming in slightly. We didn’t have a spare box or anything to capture this lot, so the husband phoned bee-keeping friend again. Another gentle knock and this lot was plopped down into the friend’s portable hive. They spotted a queen bee in there too.
Back at the main hive . . .
there was an awful lot of buzzing about and general agitation. Our bee-keepers spotted yet another queen bee already in residence there, so, in theory, the husband will have two colonies in our orchard, and his friend will be able to adopt the second swarm.