Monday night, I went back to the neighbor’s house to pick up the nuc hive that, hopefully, still held my swarm. My neighbor was very kind about the whole thing although he did look a little nervous, said he’d been watching bees go in the box and asked if they were aggressive at all. I told him, no, that actually a swarm is the most docile you’ll probably ever find bees because they don’t have a hive or honey to protect. They just want to hang out until they find a new home. (I have read this many times, and was pleased to find out it is, indeed, true when I was capturing the swarm. Although the bees were flying everywhere, I could still move them around with my hands and no one tried to sting me at all. *whew*) The neighbor also thanked me for the jar of honey and said he’d made a cream cheese & honey sandwich with it and, “It was amazing!” I could have hugged him.
I plugged the two entrances with wine corks to keep anyone from escaping while I walked them back to my yard. I set them at the base of our lilac bush thinking it’s a pretty good out-of-the-way (and level) spot right now. I will probably move them after I build their hive so they can get more early morning sun. Right now my current big hive gets sun about an hour before the base of the lilac bush. As is true for most of us, warming up in the morning lets the bees get to work earlier.
Tuesday morning the bees were out doing orientation flights (“Oh, new digs–wonder where we are–let’s note some landmarks so we can find it again”) and foraging. I didn’t see much pollen going in the hive, yet. Swarms need to build comb first so they have a place to store their nectar and lay eggs, so they’re hard at work doing that. I don’t really want to disturb them, but I could put in a bar of comb from the other hive to give them a boost. Maybe this afternoon. The nice weather we’ve had has been a big help in working the bees this week!
*Yes, I own purple duct tape….