Sunday, 3 October 2010

My cast swarm

About 6 weeks ago I picked up a small swarm of bees from a place in Leeds. A  small swarm is called a cast. It is very late in the year for swarms of any size and this one was about the size of 2 or 3 tennis balls, so not big. I would like to try and get it through winter but I think it will be hard due to the size. I do know that it needs more food to get it through winter, so I added a frame of honey yesterday and our lass took some pictures

When I housed the swarm I put them in a National brood box that I had been using as a bait hive. It had some loose pieces of comb in that were tied in to a frame (this is my first year as a beekeeper so I dont have spare frames of comb drawn in by a colony)  The bees so far have expanded on the original comb.

The next frame along, they have drawn their own fresh comb,the trouble here though is that the foundation I put in has slipped down (this means I did not fit it correctly, so a lesson there for me) In turn the bees have also glued it to the next frame along, so in this shot there are actually two frames not just one. I will sort this problem next year if this colony makes if through the Winter/Spring

This is the frame of honey I am adding to the cast. This frame is from a hive I have elsewhere, it is mainly made up of sugar syrup honey as I have been feeding my other colonies. It has already been in the hive once, but I whipped it out again so our lass could take a piccy

 This is me putting everything away, As the colony is small I have kept it at home. So far they have not been a bit of bother because the colony is so small

Weather in Wakefield, England yesterday was wet, rainy and damp, Today it has not stopped raining all morning


  1. Just incredible pictures here and thank-you so much for posting all of these. I am really fascinated by it all. I can not get over how it is done and how it looks. I am a huge fan of Honey Comb and I buy it when I can, although I have to go to Toronto to get it. The weather here at the moment is rather cool and rainy and supposed to be like that for the next few days. The trees are just now starting to turn colour. However where I was yesterday the Fall colours are in full glory. That was a place called Port Parry, quite far north of here. It is North of Oshawa, north east of Toronto.

  2. Port Parry sounds like a great place. I am just going to pop over and take a look at your great blog Reg