My first swarm of the year..
My bees were busy collecting water to take back to the hive today, and they were making use of my pond. They use the water to dissolve the honey which has set in the comb amongst other things.
You can see its hairy eye which is one of the ID features it is the only bee to have hairy eyes.
Found this post box with a well established bee colony inside it, they could be saved with a cut out but doubt they would survive the winter if left alone.
I did a hive inspection today and took these queen pic’s in three of my hives
Each is a different queen
I’ve just picked up this swarm that came form a hollow tree, the bees have lived and swarmed from there for the last 30 years the lady said.
Its the biggest I’ve ever seen.
Where it came from
The swarm that failed in there first attempt at swarming , managed to take flight today. It flew out of my garden and into the same tree I have caught my last three swarms on. This one was a little higher.
After removing some of the branches, I managed to shake the swam into a travel box, Luckily the queen went in and the rest followed.
The travel box was taken back to the garden and installed into a Nucleus hive , but the size of the swarm means it will only be in there a small amount of time.
I was lucky enough to see this rare event of one of my virgin queen bees returning back to the hive from a mating flight (hopefully not a virgin now) she only ever leaves the hive on her mating flight or when she leaves with a swarm so may be only two or three outings fomr the hive in her lifetime.