With the mild winter Austin had this year, swarm season is already upon us. I decided to create a page on my blog to consolidate information on who to call to report a swarm as well as some general information about them. I borrowed heavily (i.e. stole most of the content) from the wonderful Albuquerque Beekeepers web page.
I don’t have too many folks on the list yet, but the two people I currently do have, Konrad Bouffard and Jim Hogg, I know personally, and they will do everything they can to safely remove the bees. As I find other folks I trust, I’ll update the list accordingly.
4 responses to “Swarm Season in Central Texas”
Glad you found our page helpful. Bring on the swarms!
Hi, I stumbled across your blog. I’ve never been exposed to bee keeping but I find it interesting! I’m a photojournalist student and would like to cover a story on a beekeeper. From looking at your blog I feel as if there is a great story here.
Hey I’m new to the plight of the honey bee and just want to provide a little safe haven while we can possibly benefit in our massive gardens too! Got a top bar hive w view window but no bees living inside yet, keep hearing about buying bees but wanted to draw our own guys in naturally. Any suggestions? Hive is maybe 40 yards from gardens but there’s tall wild grasses/weeds/flowers all in between the two spots. I tied twine 6″ long from center of one bar hanging down, couple drops of honey up around the knot in twine, couple drops lemongrass oil near entrance, water nearby…but all I’m catchin are daddy long legs!! Buy or be patient or try something new? Was kinda hopin for more of a hands-off experience here, not after their honey really.
Judy, at this point it is pretty late in the season to buy any bees. Most apiaries sell out of their packages January-February. Not to say you can’t find some, but it may require a lot of calling around.
Setting up a bait hive is a hit or miss proposition. There needs to be an existing hive somewhere in the vicinity that casts off a swarm, and then the scouts from that swarm need to decide your hive is the best location to setup shop. Bees do prefer cavities that are off the ground which is why most people put their bait hives 6-12 feet off the ground.
The other option is to get on your local swarm mailing list and go grab a swarm that has settled somewhere and then install them into your top bar hive.