Today is the day! It’s Bee Day!! I left out early this morning down to Dixie Bee Supply to pickup my shipment of bees I ordered a few months ago. I actually messed up the pickup time in my calendar and ended up arriving about 20mins late. When I arrived however there were a ton of people already waiting on their orders and purchasing new equipment. I ended up standing in line for about 10mins or more before they called for pre-orders, then I got to jump the line and grab my bees. I walked outside and there was a huge flatbed loaded with nucs and bees flying everywhere. It was then that I realized that not all of the bees were actually INSIDE the box! I just assumed it was a closed up box that I could carry back in my car… but when I looked around I saw everyone driving trucks. At this point there was not much I could do so I loaded the bees into the back of our SUV and hit the road. A few minutes driving and I began to see something… it didn’t take long before half a dozen bees were flying around an enclosed car traveling 60mph down the road. I decided my best course of action was to crank up the AC and hope it kept them in the back, haha. To my surprise it actually did, in fact they clung to the back window for the warmth the sun provided.
When I finally got home (an hour later), I pulled the box out and rolled down all the window so the bees could find their way out of the car. I suited up and hauled everything to the site of the bees new home. Camdyn wanted to see them as well so I suited him up so he could watch up close. When I had everything organized I unscrewed the box and popped the top. At first there were several bees but it didn’t look too intimidating; that was until I pulled out a frame and it was practically black from all of the bees crawling around. I pulled out each frame one by one and placed them inside the new hive in the same order. With all of frames out, I filled in the empty spots with empty frames (the nuc came with 5 and my deep box takes 10).
I looked inside the box and there was still a huge ball of bees at the bottom. I was worried the queen was in the middle and not actually in the new hive. This isn’t good, because if the queen doesn’t go in the hive then all of the bees will just up and leave. I tried using the brush tool to get them out but it just wasn’t working very well. In the end I decided the best course of action was to just turn the box upside down over the new hive and give it a good *THUMP*, sending all of the bees into their new home. This really stirred things up and the bees began to get agitated so I picked up the speed and finished up. I put the top on the new hive, left the old nuc so they could feed off of any remaining honey inside, loaded up my equipment and left them to get acquainted with their new home.
I was actually surprised by how easy it was to move the bees to the new hive. I think because it was all new, I was a little scared about the whole process. Overall the only thing I think I would change for next season is using a truck over an suv when I pick up more bees!