Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Bee prepared this swarm season

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As the weather warms up and plants start to bloom for Spring, bee populations will start to increase again.

Apiarist Alicia Vohland, owner of Windy Acres Farm between Westbrook and Wyreema, said swarming is the natural process of honey bee colonies expanding to form new colonies.

“When they outgrow their current hive or it is too populated for the Queen’s pheromones to control the entire workforce, then the workers signal that it is time to swarm,” she said.

“The worker bees fill up on nectar in preparation for the journey, they starve their Queen (so she’s lighter to fly) and the old Queen and some of the workers leave to find a new place to live, leaving the remaining workers to raise a new Queen in the old hive.

“The swarm doesn’t usually make it too far from their original hive because the Queen isn’t a strong flyer and has to rest.

“The swarms are usually quiet and calm, as they have no nest to protect.”

Windy Acres Farm is a lavender farm and apiary run by Mrs Vohland in partnership with her husband Craig.

Mrs Vohland said it is best not to get too close, as any provoked bee may sting so you should call a beekeeper to come and remove for you.

“Colonies are stimulated to swarm during spring when warmer weather, together with an abundance of nectar and pollen, provide ideal conditions for the colony to increase rapidly,” she said.

“If you find a swarm, please call a Beekeeper to safely collect and re-home.”

Mrs Vohland said Windy Acres Farm offers this as a community service and if they are available will gladly come and safely collect the bees for you.

They can be contacted on 0409 879 302 or admin@ windyacresfarm.com.au

On Our Selection News 11 August 2022

This article appeared in On Our Selection News, 11 August 2022.

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