Thursday, 9 June 2011

The Swarm

And everything was going so well. There we were, happily chatting to the bees, watching them flitting about on our herbs, dreaming of all the honey they'd produce, and then they've gone and swarmed.
I was out in the garden yesterday when all of a sudden I realised there were bees buzzing. Rather a lot of them. They were swirling around and around, flying here and there, in a spiral pattern. Then they left.
Stupidly, we had not bothered to artificially swarm our colony - a process where you get another hive and trick some of the bees into moving there and thinking they have swarmed. No, we blithely thought, we don't need to do that, we'll do it later.
And the result? The queen has legged it, taking most of the bees with her. We have had a look and left a couple of queen cells to hopefully hatch out and become new queens.
In the meantime, I've had a couple of shame faced chats with bee experts who were lovely and full of advice. Although I couldn't quite shake the feeling they were inwardly tutting.
So we have to wait a week now and find out if the little bees have made another colony. Fingers crossed!
Looks like that honey will have to wait.

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