Oxford Bees

The missing Queen of Colony 20

Submitted by will on Tue, 07/07/2020 - 07:01

I was called back to the site where I'd collected Colony 20 on Friday (3rd July 2020). I eventually made it there on Sunday. Life is busy.

There was still a small cluster of bees at the top of the tree. The most likely explanation is that the Queen is in that cluster. The bees rest of the swarm (in the hive) is busy making comb. No pollen is coming in.

The Queen is too high up for me to reach. If she's still alive today (7th July 2020) then it can't be for much longer.

I will have to do something with Colony 20 because they appear to be queenless.

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A very tricky catch for Colony 20

Submitted by will on Sun, 28/06/2020 - 05:30

I was called on 24th June to see a swarm in 2 parts on a tree. The tree was on raised land next to the canal towpath in Jericho, Oxford. There was no hives nearby so I suppose it came from the Cripley Meadow Allotments which are reasonably nearby.

The swarm had formed in 2 places in the tree. By the time I saw it, it had joined into one fair sized swarm at the whippy top of the tree and was in accessible. Next morning it had fallen out of the tree and was all over the ground.

An easy catch for colony 19

Submitted by will on Sun, 28/06/2020 - 05:30

I was called to the Barton Fields allotments to see a swarm of bees on a bush. By the time I arrived it had fallen onto the ground. I placed a box next to it and gently scooped some bees into it. Quite quickly there was fanning and the remainder marched in. The whole catch must have taken no more than half an hour.

I gently cycled home with the box on my bike. It turned out that the box was slightly damaged so a couple of dozen bees escaped. I left them in a cool place and marched them into a hive the next morning.