The morning of Friday 29th May the phone goes again. Sandy again. The swarm was still in the tree. Could I come along?
This time Colin, from ELBA also came along. So, while Sandy and I were lighting the smoker, Colin had attacked the sweeping willow tree, much to Sandy’s dismay, and was now able to get the nucleus box underneath the swarm. With a large thump, we managed to get most of the clump into the awaiting box. However, there were still plenty in the tree, under the tree, in the air and on us! I climbed into the hole in the side of the tree and smoked the rest out, brushed those off the outside of the tree and brushed off the hundreds on us! With the vast majority in the box, we put the lid partially on and waited. Within a few minutes, bees were fanning the entrance and going inside. We had caught the queen. What a buzz!! I wrapped the box in a blanket and put it in the boot of the car. It was now time to take it to my waiting hive.
A short drive later, down a dirt track, over a gate and round the corner we were there. Getting the bees over the gate was easier than getting Sandy over but we made it! We opened the empty hive, opened the transportation box and thumped the bees in! The second attempt at catching the swarm was a success. They were in their new home. I was a beekeeper!