I’ve been thinking about swarms lately. Obsessing, really.
I know it’s because my Buckfast bees came through our mild winter exceptionally well. They are breeding and foraging at a record pace. I’m worried that some of them are going to pack their honey bags and leave the hive. And me. I couldn’t bear it.
I’ve been keeping bees for six years now, and I’ve never experienced a swarm. (I did negligently instigate a fatal robbing situation. I’m still recovering…)
I know Buckies aren’t the swarming kind, but I’ve ordered a package of Italians, and they are notorious for their swarmitude.
So I’ve been reading a lot on the subject, and I’ve gotten myself into a lather. Should I checkerboard? How about splitting? How about just adding a few more supers on the top?
Then I started thinking about those stories of bees in the wall. No, they’re not urban myths. Bees take up residence in the space between inner and outer walls of houses and just go to town.
It doesn’t look like swarming is a problem for those unfortunate folks with bees in their walls. Why??
Tomorrow I will share my very unscientific theory about why bees in the wall don’t swarm…