Picking Up The Package Bees

I’ll Have Three Boxes Of Bees Please!

On Saturday morning Brian and I picked up three new packages of bees from a local bee supplier.  Every year he drives down in a truck to Georgia and watches as the bee packages are made, then loads them up one by one into a trailer and drives hundreds of them back here to deliver to local beekeepers.  My new bees came from packages that were put together on Thursday morning.   The girls spent all day Friday driving back to Massachusetts.  By the time they came to me the bees had been in the boxes for two days.

This is the trailer the packages came in.

The bees were being well taken care of on the trailer and had plenty of ventilation.

The packages were getting ventilation while on the trailer.

A few of the bees escaped the boxes and were lost.  They landed on the outside of the packages, trying to hitchhike a ride home, all the while looking for a way to get inside.   Both the package bees and hitchhiking bees are very confused.  They have been displaced from their hive and everything they have known has drastically changed. 

First, the bees are shaken off the frames from their hive and down a funnel into a box.  Then a new queen they don’t know is put into a cage and placed inside the package with them.  There may be sister bees from other hives in there as well so the package can reach the three pound weight of bees threshold.  Finally, these artificial swarms are driven many states away to a new climate and rehived.  It is a very confusing time for the bees.

Lost bees hitchhiking their way to a new home. They want into the box.

The three packages of bees are now ready to come home with us.

3 packages of bees.

Pictures just can’t capture the aliveness and gentle buzzing of all those bees inside that box so I’ve included a video below.

Now all the girls need is a brand new home.

Other Posts You May Enjoy:

  1. Three New Packages of Bees And Crocus Hive
  2. Blue Pollen, Honeybees and Siberian Squill
  3. How To Assemble A Frame – A Beginner Beekeeper’s Guide
  4. Planting A Bee Friendly Garden
  5. First Spring Hive Inspection Of An Overwintered Colony – March 12, 2012

Author: Anita Deeley

Anita Deeley is a biologist and former state bee inspector who maintains 100 honey bee hives. She is the beekeeper, writer, owner and creator of BeverlyBees.com. When she is not spending time with her girls (the bees), she enjoys being a wife to her beekeeping cohort, Brian and mother to 3 little boys (the beekeepers in training). Read more about Anita here >> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Connect with Anita on Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ or Facebook here.