Swarming is a natural behavior that occurs typically for a variety of reasons but the most common is crowding. In this instance about half the bees will leave the hive with a new queen, so this pre-swarming behavior is usually noted by a visible increase in worker bees and the creation of swarm cells, which are queen cups made near the bottom or edges of comb. To control swarming behavior effectively, check your hives frequently during the pollen flow or while you are actively supplementing pollen. Honeybees will be bulking up their worker population for foraging nectar when the nectar flow happens, also to act as guards when mammalian predators begin coming out of hibernation.
They are much different than supercedure cells, that are created usually in the middle of the comb in the instance where the queen is old or dead, and the workers are attempting to raise a new queen. In that case depending on your bees you may want to requeen or if you’re feeling lucky go ahead and squish your current queen so the workers can raise a new queen without fuss. If you don’t euthanize the old queen there’s a good chance she’ll sting the queen pupa as they emerge from the cell. Search “queen piping”, it’s a distinct sound that the pupa will make when she emerges to challenge the queen. Insects are rad.>>2070570
I mean, I only talk from experience, just walking up to them 10-15 feet away and already getting tagged by 5 of them. Didn’t even approach in their flight path, but I guess it was my fault since I had showered that morning.>>2070783
Saskatraz bees are a strain of honeybees with Russian, Italian, and German genetic lineage that have been bred for better overwintering, hygienic behavior, and varroa resistance. They are quite expensive though, with a single package w/mated queen selling from Mann Lake for $208. I am waiting on a pair of Saskatraz packages and maybe will post an update if other beekanons wanna keep discussing apiculture on this board.