Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Honeybees Galore!

Some friends of mine who are on the faculty at St. John's, have had two swarms, in the same spot of their apple tree, a week apart.  This first one may have been a larger swarm with a second, smaller swarm next to it.  I placed the hive on an outdoor table beneath them and tried to shake both groups in.  They ended up mostly landing on top of the bars I left in place:

They did, however, all go in, (though if that was a second swarm, they may have flown off elsewhere.  Here is a photo of them signaling the other bees to come on down.  I left this hive in their yard:

The second swarm, a week later, was there in the morning.  They were very quiet and still, so I believe they had been there overnight.  I brought a half-hive over, hoisted it on my shoulder, climbed to the top of a stepladder and shook them straight in.  They gathered themselves more quickly and are now happily buzzing about in my backyard:

I now have ten hives under my care - more than I have had in a few years.  I think all the rain we have been having has been good for the honeybees in Santa Fe.  This might be the year I get back to selling honey at the Farmer's Market.

All photos were taken by Susan, who has a wonderful sense of excitement and wonder at the arrival of all these bees in her backyard.

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