Swarm season starts in Spring, generally May and June. Its not un heard of for swarming to start as early as February, and go into August, which makes for a very large window of time when you may spot one. When you have a swarm making a new home, at your home call Craig Family Honey Farms. In most cases we will retrieve the swarm at little to no cost to you, and they will be relocated to our apiaries in Tacoma, or Hoquiam Washington. What is a swarm? Lots of insects have “swarms,” and for honeybees their swarming serves a very exciting and fascinating experience. There are several reasons for bees to swarm, but we will focus on the main reason, and that is propagation. After a honeybee colony has made it through its first year it matures enough that it’s time for some of the bees to leave and not return. It starts with a rumbling of activity inside the hive, a congregation of bees have begun forming, easily 10 to 20 thousand of them. Then, they erupt out of the colony and begin quickly zeroing in on their first of many temporary resting sites. The old Queen leaves her home with this group, and a new Queen is left to pick up where she left off. This new group of bees will assemble together somewhere nearby, usually on a tree branch or other protruding structure. There they will huddle around the
When you see a swarm of honeybees; keep in mind that although intimidating by sheer numbers, the bees in a swarm have very little interest in stinging, or otherwise attacking you. At this point the bees have no home to defend, so the urge to be defensive isn’t as present. Prior to leaving the old hive, all of the bees will gorge themselves on as much honey as they can in order to take “supplies” with them for their journey. This in turn makes the bees a lot heavier and flying becomes a bit more tiring for them. These and other factors make it that although the bees are of course physically able to sting you they generally wont during this time…but it’s still best to leave them alone. If you have a swarm of bees you need removed, give Craig Family Honey Farms a call now! Most honeybee colonies can be removed at little or no cost to you. (253) 569 9677
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Queen and wait as scout bees search the area for a proper new home. This process seldom ends quickly, and they can sometimes spend days flying, as a group, from area to area looking for exactly what they want. Once the bees have found their new home they begin building a new colony to start the whole process over again. The old colony, it is left with a new Queen, who’s job it is to get mated and begin re populating the colony. Some colonies, especially if its a good year, will produce more than one swarm in a season, which of course equals lots of bees!