Yes, in my part of the country, March is a time for swarms. The weather is beginning to warm and the flowers are blooming everywhere.

The Spring time regulars show up in March. Flowers like – Purple Dead Nettle; Henbit; Dandelion; Hellebore & Mahonia. Good old stand by herbs like Rosemary also provide the Spring forage that the bees need to build up the brood.

As the weather warms, there will be more and more flowers blooming for the bees. Spring is the largest and heaviest flow for the year, so the bees take advantage of this flush of forage. The heavy nectar producers will bloom in April.

I lost one hive over the winter months, but the others are very healthy and strong. They are showing signs of swarming. I have swarm boxes all ready for them.

I let the hives swarm as this is an excellent and natural mite control. When the bees swarm, it causes a brood break in both the hive that swarmed and in the remaining original hive. The mites propagate in the brood of the bees. Take away the source of brood for a period of about 2-3 weeks and you have a natural source of control. Besides, the bees do this naturally. To suppress this activity, also suppresses the health of the bees.

I have three (3) swarm traps out and I have seen activity at all three. I do not think that they have actually swarmed and moved into the traps yet, but they are very interested in the swarm traps. This tells me that they will eventually swarm/move into the traps when weather permits.

This is another reason that I let the bees figure out the best time. So many beekeepers get too excited when spring arrives and performs the task of “splitting” the hive too soon (before the bees are actually ready to make the move) Many times, this results in “absconding” or death of the bees.

Let the Bees do what the Bees know how to do!!! They do it perfectly every time!!!!

Video of Bees Checking Out the Swarm Traps

My hopes and wishes are that some of the swarms find the swarm traps and move it. If there are any other swarms, my hope is that they land low so that I can catch them.

March is about to end for 2024 and April has many adventures ahead!!


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