While Phil was at the Scythe Festival, a swarm moved into the bait hive we have on top of the red barn. So on his return he took the bees down to his out apiary in the village then put the bait hive back on the barn, complete with a box of natural comb saved from one of our other Warré hives.
The comb proved irresistible to the bees. Phil noticed a lot scout activity earlier in the day, then the bees duly arrived…..
After dusk the top box will be taken down from the barn, complete with the swarm inside, and set up in a permanent position elsewhere on the farm. Then the bait hive will be replenished with a fresh box and we will see if we can catch swarm number three.
For those not familiar with it, the title refers to the bee keepers saying:
A swarm in May is worth a load of hay,
A swarm in June is worth a silver spoon,
A swarm in July isn’t worth a fly
This reflects the value of an early swarm, which will have the whole summer to establish and so has a good chance of building up enough strength to survive the winter. I love how hay is the most valuable commodity!
For lots more information on Warré beekeeping, see David Heaf’s informative site.