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Bees Get a New Home

Bees Get a New Home

Ever wondered how bees create a new colony?

by Gary James

There was a fascinating illustration of this recently on our site. A swarm was spotted on the allotments, and thanks to our WhatsApp group, Matt, our resident beekeeper was soon down on the site to take charge.

He explained that sometimes a queen will go off, taking most of the colony with her, in search of a new home. This is when they form a swarm, a tightly packed ball. I found Matt in the bottom corner of the site, looking up at the swarm which was about 15ft up in a tree.

With the help of our telescopic loppers, I reached up ready to cut off the branch whilst Matt was perched precariously on his step ladder holding up a large cardboard box.

Trying not to think about what would happen if he missed them, I cut the branch and fortunately Matt caught it perfectly! He put the box on the ground and over the next half an hour or so the remaining bees in the air joined their fellow workers in the box.

The following morning

The following morning, he returned to introduce them to the hive which was to become their new home.

You might think that getting them into the hive could be a challenge, but watch the amazing video (here), with the sound on, to see the orderly way in which the queen and all her subjects moved in.

Isn’t nature wonderful!