Any beekeepers in Gary, Ind?
Bees are confused
Clinging to the red reflexors on a trailer. I called a local guy, couldnt figure out how to estimate swarm size, chuckl, but it was dark and there was no sense trying to move them. My guess is if no one gets stung walking past them tonite, management wont come out and kill them. When the truck drives off, they will blow off, I will check on them at daylite before I also leave...
Sometimes a swarm will settle down late afternoon before they find a new home. They will usually fly away as soon as it is warm enough in the morning.
The problem would be if there was a space they thought of as a possible home in the wall of the truck. If the queen moves in, she often won't move out. Then the workers will hang around the best they can.
Easiest way to describe the swarm size is to say how much space they are taking up. An experienced beekeeper will say to herself "Hmm... a foot across.... and it is really hot out, so they are more spread out than usual. Small swarm"
That trailer probably left before the swarm was active. It rained at daylite and I checked my own truck - all that was left.I tried to stir them from my truck, but doubt they survived once I left. I have been studying to see how I might ha e talked the queen into walking into the woods with me if this happens again. All that was left this morn pic. Made me sad all day.
You probably cannot temp the queen into following you, but if you can sort through the bees you could put the queen in a queen cage with the tiniest plug of bee candy or just a finger over that hole. The workers will smell her, and follow her when you move her. Place the queen cage in a tree or high up on a bush. Poke a hole through the bee candy (if you used any) and the bees will free her very quickly.
I had a tub of honey from indoors, but never saw the queen- the hive left before I got up - on the other truck. I think because these had been left apart from the swarm they had found refuge from the rain in the treads of my tire. Queen cage. Gonna have to study up on bee goodies- if I had found a queen I just planned on toting her over to the woods in my glove. Me wearing the glove tho. Thanx. Wish we could keep them in South Texas, but the killer strain is too close there and they have been advising against it for many years now.
A queen cage is a small box with a lot of openings, such as a mesh screen top, and a larger hole big enough for the queen to escape through. The bees can reach the queen to groom her and feed her, but she can be carried around and placed where you want her.
Bee candy is a super saturated solution of sugar and water, boiled just a bit (soft candy stage or a bit harder, if you have a way to test this). It is pretty gooey, but just enough to plug a hole in the queen cage. The workers will eat the candy and free the queen. The more candy you plug the hole with the longer it takes them to eat it. For this purpose you want only a thin smear of it. Just enough to hold her in there maybe an hour or less.
I would be very cautious approaching a swarm where africanized bees are known.