I am a little late in writing this blog, partly as I haven’t quite known how to go about it. It concerns the absconding of a whole hive full of bees. Not an ordinary swarm, but the leaving of a whole colony.
It’s always great to share the exciting stuff we get up to, but my first response to this situation was to hide my head and not publicise it. Partly because they are not my own bees but those of the group and they were in my care. On hearing the news one friend instantly replied he hoped they had found a better home, another that it must be bad beekeeping and yet another that although initially disappointing we must take the experience on board and treat it as part of the journey of Bungay Community Bees.
My response to these comments is yes, it is a part of our story (here I am sharing it), yes, it must be down to bad beekeeping – something about the hive and site we provided was not to their liking, and yes, I think they have found a home they prefer. My reasoning for the latter comes from the lack of larvae, meaning the Queen had stopped laying a couple of weeks ago; the complete lack of nectar, honey and pollen and because they didn’t cluster on leaving to allow scouts to look for another home but had somewhere to fly directly away to.
I have asked several people for theories on why this may have happened, but all seem stumped. I would love to try and rectify whatever was wrong and to that end we will re-site the hive in a quieter area, well away from chickens, apple trees and smelly compost heaps. Fingers crossed….