My friends Joe and Michele have two top bars in their yard. They've been beekeeping for a few years and were instrumental in legalizing hives in the City of Louisville. A couple weeks ago, while I was on a business trip to beautiful Cleveland, Joe contacted me about a swarm in his neighborhood. Being in Cleveland I couldn't get it so Joe and Michele captured it and had it in a box. Their plan was to add it to their suspected queenless hive using the newspaper method.
They invited me over to watch and learn a little about this process. First step was to insure there was no queen in the hive. After about 90 minutes of thorough checking we found her. See the video below, she's on the left side with a long black abdomen:
So, now that Joe and Michele have a good queen they offered the swarm to me. I graciously accepted and installed them in the struggling hive I had a the Kois' Farm. Here's a little video of the results:
The beekeeping community in the Denver Metro Area is really helpful when you're in need. I found a blog from a person named KitBo called the Kittalog. After reading her blog and finding that she had been hearing of swarms I asked her to let me know if she needs anyone up north to pick up a swarm I could help. Within a week she was letting me know about a swarm and my cousin Theresa and I went out and captured a swarm. Here's the swarm we captured.
This is the swarm we put in the second hive out at Kois's Farm. This hive is the same design as the one at my house that I will get to shortly. I'll add a picture of the hive shortly.
Thanks Kit for helping me find a swarm for this hive.
2 Nuc's From Kris Holthaus
After losing the two packages I found yet another very helpful person north of Fort Collins named Kris. Kris is one of the most knowledgeable people I've met regarding bees. She keeps a number of hives in her yard, rear's queens, and builds nucleus hives or nuc's (nukes). I had her look at my hive design to see if there was a problem and asked her to put together two nuc's for Karen and I to have in our yard hives.
After what seemed like a long time she finally had the nuc's ready. They took longer to build because of the cool weather we had in May. Although they weren't totally ready to pick up, she let me pick them up and do the feeding myself.
Last week Karen and I installed the nuc's in both of our hives and we're now up to 4 hives. I'll add a few pictures at a later date.