Wednesday, June 19, 2013

A Hive in a Hurry

This week Trish hurried to finish a hive for our friends Yun and Jade because their hive split. The swarm of bees took up residence in their neighbor's yard, and they called a local bee expert to collect the swarm. The bees waited for a couple days in a screened (ventilated) box (courtesy of the bee expert) while Trish finished up building a hive. Then yesterday she went over and helped install the bees in their new home.

Meanwhile the two hives in our yard are very active, and both seem to be growing every day. Trish thinks the hive by the garden may split/swarm, too, so she is going to add a fourth box to the hive soon.

Remember that if you're in the Seattle area and interested in a Warre hive, let us know as Trish would love to build you one. You might very well be able to get a swarm for your hive as this is a great season for bees so far, and I would think that many local hives will split/swarm.


  1. Excellent blog! I'm based out of Seattle most of the week, but I am looking to start a hive at a farm I'm working on in Leavenworth. I have no beekeeping experience, but am doing my reading and research. What is your recommended hive for beginners, and where should I start in terms of getting my first swarm? Do you have any resources for used beekeeping gear or hives? I realize it's a little late in the season to be starting from scratch, but if there are still hives splitting, I'm holding out hope.


    1. Thanks for the compliment and your comment!

      As for hive type, our bias is toward the Warre, especially if your goal is more to support local bee populations than to harvest honey. It's a fairly hands-off method of beekeeping, too, although you do have to add more boxes to your hive as the population grows (or else your hive splits, like our friend's did!).

      I have occasionally seen used beekeeping equipment for sale on craigslist in the farm & garden section, and also on eBay. We bought new equipment at Beez Neez in Snohomish.

      As for getting a swarm, if you can get connected with local beekeepers, that can be the best way. I noticed this list of beekeepers ( who will help people remove a swarm on their property--you might contact them to see if they have ideas about where to acquire a swarm. :)

    2. Sunshine, We have a friend who *might* have a swarm for you! If you are interested, email me at mandypoet at hotmail dot com. :)