We cut this hive out about 4 weeks ago & I left a little comb thinking maybe another swarm would move in. After all, the horses that used to use this barn are long gone. The owner said the hive had been there last year.
Lots of drones, lots of mites, but tons of really friendly bees.
Judging by the age of the brood, the new swarm moved in a couple of weeks later. Not as big or populated as the previous tenants, but no mites that I could see, and the same dark friendly bees and enough to fill a deep box. Unlike the previous hive which had very little honey stores, the blackberries are now in bloom and this hive had plenty of honey. Everything got sticky.
This is the next stall over. Another swarm moved in here about the same time as the other one.
The Bushkill bee vac
sucks them right into a hive The first hive filled three deeps, two of bees and foundation & one deep of brood, the other two just one and a western of comb each. It works really well. After you remove the vac assembly, you set the banded brood box on top, pull a divider out, and the nurse bees move up to the brood. A screen on top keeps them cool for the ride home.
Learning from my mistakes, this time I added rubber bands to one side of the frames using small frame nails. It made it much easier and faster to add bands only to one side with the cut out comb laying in the frame and it was a lot easier on the brood as well. The new comb is pretty fragile. We got a box full of eggs, brood, pollen, and honey banded up. When I got them home, I reversed the boxes on a hive bottom & added a top
Most of the bees in front have already been removed, there are plenty more between the next layers of comb..
By the time I worked my way up to the top, I still hadn't seen the queen. Then my wife saw her. She hid in the crack in the corner. We chased her from one side of the wall to the other back and forth until I caught her.
There was some interesting pollen here. At least I think it is pollen. It looks like mud. (edit: probably blackberry pollen)
The owner has another hive in the ceiling of a small storage shed.