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Method Of Doing It

Category: SWARMING.

But the process of returning such requires some little patience and
perseverance. I have said there may be a dozen young queens in the old
stock. Now suppose one, two, or more leave with the swarm, and you
return the whole together, there is nothing to prevent their leading
out the swarm again the next day. Therefore it is policy to keep the
queens back. The least trouble is to hive in the usual way, and let
them stand till the next morning. It will save you the trouble of
looking for more than one, if there should be more, for all but that
are destroyed by that time. There is a chance, also, for the old stock
to decide that no more should issue, and allow all but one to be slain
there. When this is the case, and you find the one with the swarm, you
will have no further trouble by their re-issuing. They should be
returned as soon as the next morning, otherwise they might not agree,
even when put in the old home. To return them, and find a queen easily,
get a wide board a few feet long; let one end rest on the ground, the
other near the entrance, that they may enter the hive without flying;
then shake out the swarm on the lower end of the board; but few will
fly, but soon commence running up towards the hive; the first one that
discovers the entrance will set up the call for the others. If they do
not discover it, which is the case sometimes, scatter some of them near
it, and they will soon commence marching up, when you should look out
for, and secure the queen, as they spread and give a good chance. By
applying your ear to the hive, the piping will tell you if they are to
issue again. It is evident, if you follow these directions, that the
swarm cannot issue many times before their stock of royalty will be
exhausted; and when but one queen remains the piping will cease, and no
further trouble will be had. To prevent these after swarms, some
writers recommend turning over the hive and cutting out all the royal
cells but one. This I have found impracticable with a great many
stocks. Some of the cells are too near the top to be seen, consequently
this cannot always be depended upon. As for a rule about returning, it
is somewhat difficult to give one. If I should say, return all such as
issue after the 20th of June, the variation in the season might be two
or three weeks, even in the same latitude; i.e., the course of flowers
that had bloomed by that date in one season might, another year,
require two weeks more to bring out. Also, the 20th of June, in
latitude of New York City, is as late as the 4th of July in many places
further north. I once had a second swarm on the 11th of July, that
wintered well, having nearly filled the hive. Yet, in some seasons, the
first swarms, of the last of June, have failed to get enough. In
sections where much buckwheat is raised, late swarms do more towards
filling their hives than where there is none.

Next: More Care Needed By After Swarms When Hived

Previous: When They Should Be Returned

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