Page 1 of 9 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 82

Thread: Apiary Vicinity mating again

  1. #1
    Senior Member Jon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Belfast, N. Ireland
    Posts
    5,107
    Blog Entries
    94

    Default Apiary Vicinity mating again

    I saw a perfect example of this today in my back garden where I have about 40 Apideas, most of them with virgins at the moment.
    About 4.30 I noticed the mating swarm in the air and it settled in a Rowan tree in my next door neighbour's garden just over the fence.
    This is part of the process of AVM, the bees circle in the air with a load of drones present then settle around the queen the same way they do with a swarm.
    I have not worked out what role this plays in the process but I have seen it dozens of times now.
    I checked through the apideas and found the one which was depleted and queenless and kept an eye on it.
    About 6pm the cluster broke and the bees rose in the air and moved to the entrance of the Apidea and started fanning.
    I watched it carefully from about 6 feet away and saw the queen land on the front and go in.

    There was speculation in earlier discussions as to whether this behaviour was mating or absconding so I think that is settled as bees do not abscond only to change their mind a couple of hours later.
    The other thing is that the bees return before the queen, who is almost the last bee to return, so this behaviour must be driven by the workers rather than the queen.
    That queen will be laying in 2-3 days when I check.

    Hopefully she mated ok as she emerged on 14th July so must be near her sell by date.
    Last edited by Jon; 12-08-2015 at 06:32 PM.

  2. #2

    Default

    Jon would that queen have the mating sign?

  3. #3
    Senior Member Jon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Belfast, N. Ireland
    Posts
    5,107
    Blog Entries
    94

    Default

    Not when she went into the apidea but she had been in a cluster of bees for 90 minutes.

  4. #4

    Default

    Perhaps it's some of her pheromones kick starting ?

  5. #5
    Senior Member prakel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Jurassic Coast.
    Posts
    1,454

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon View Post
    Not when she went into the apidea but she had been in a cluster of bees for 90 minutes.
    Do you feel that the 'swarm' picks up sufficient drones while in the air and then they mate while the cluster has settled? Or, does the mating take place on the wing prior to the cluster settling. Any thoughts on the reason for clustering so long?

  6. #6
    Senior Member Jon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Belfast, N. Ireland
    Posts
    5,107
    Blog Entries
    94

    Default

    I think they mate in the air on the wing. The purpose of the little cluster is a mystery to me but it must have some function in the mating process as it happens so often.

  7. #7
    Administrator gavin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Tayside
    Posts
    4,396
    Blog Entries
    41

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon View Post
    I think they mate in the air on the wing. The purpose of the little cluster is a mystery to me but it must have some function in the mating process as it happens so often.
    Voyeur bees.

  8. #8
    Senior Member prakel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Jurassic Coast.
    Posts
    1,454

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon View Post
    I think they mate in the air on the wing.
    What's the average time that they're in the air?

  9. #9
    Senior Member Jon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Belfast, N. Ireland
    Posts
    5,107
    Blog Entries
    94

    Default

    about 15 minutes

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by gavin View Post
    Voyeur bees.
    bee dogging ?

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •