photos by socalurbanfarmer
This is the biggest swarm I’ve ever caught, and it may be the biggest I’ve ever seen. I first found them about a million feet up in a mulberry tree. We set up the extension ladder, threw together a rope and pulley system for the box, and as soon as I started putting on my harness these gals decided they’d make it easier on me and moved to a shorter tree.
After clipping as many branches as possible, I was finally able to reach the swarm using a 5-foot ladder. They were still hard to reach, and it took three separate shakes into three separate containers to get the lot of them. As of today (2 days later), they are still not completely settled into their new home, so I’m forced to leave the queen excluder in place at the bottom of the box longer than I’d like.