It was an ordinary morning as I prepared to head to the office when my day took an unexpected turn. The clock read 8:16 when my phone rang, and on the other end was a man named John, in quite a buzz about a swarm of bees that had found their way to his front porch. This was no ordinary morning anymore, as I, a dedicated beekeeper, was summoned to the scene of what promised to be a fascinating encounter. Little did I know that this would be a day filled with beekeeping adventures and a rush against time.
As I picked up the call, John’s concern was evident in his voice. He had a swarm of bees right on his front porch, and he needed help. His house was located approximately five miles away from mine, and there was little time to waste before my workday officially began. I knew I had to act fast, and my goal was to coax the swarm into a temporary hive setup, hoping to retrieve them later. There was no time for a delicate vacuum operation or the luxury of carefully transferring them into a container. My heart raced with excitement as I contemplated the challenge ahead.
I had some drawn comb in old frames, but I had no time to collect frames with brood or honey. In a hurry, I grabbed three frames, added them to some new ones, and prepared to construct a makeshift hive. With a spare 5-foot ladder in tow and the hive body and frame loaded into my car. Additionally, I quickly tore up an old cardboard box to serve as a temporary container to scoop up the bees.
Upon arriving at John’s house, I wasted no time. I placed the hive body with frames under the swarm, doing my best to get as close to the house as possible. I used the cardboard box to scoop several clumps of bees into the hive body. To my delight, it seemed like they were starting to accept their new home almost immediately. With the bees beginning to transition, I placed the hive’s top, leaving about a one-inch opening for the bees to enter and exit. With the bees actively moving into their new home, it was clear that they were established.
By 1 pm, I found myself anxiously checking on the bees’ progress. To my relief, they had all made their way into the box, with some bees coming and going. It was a moment of satisfaction, knowing that I had successfully intervened to rescue this swarm. However, my day was far from over. The bees needed to be relocated to my bee yard.
The unexpected call from John had turned my routine workday into a thrilling beekeeping adventure. With quick thinking and resourcefulness, I managed to rescue a swarm of bees that might have otherwise met a less fortunate fate. My commitment to these fascinating insects paid off, and as the sun began to dip below the horizon, I was already planning my return with a smoker to seal up the bees and safely transport them to their new home.