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Bearding or swarming behavior?


I have am 8-frame flow with 2 brood boxes and the super on at the moment. The bee population has exploded lately, so I’m hoping for a bit of insight. I’m in boston and the temp has been low 80s lately and around 30-40% humidity. At night there are THOUSANDS of bees all over the front and sides of the hive. Here is a picture from my NEST:

It’s been like this every single night (even when the temp is in the 60s) for 6-8 weeks. During the day it’s much less, but still bearding and fanning all day. Should I be worried about swarming?


You won’t know if they are making swarming preps unless you look inside. How often do you look at the brood boxes?


I’ve been going in there bi-weekly. Haven’t seen any swarm cells, but half the hive being out of the boxes seemed abnormal to me.


If an in hive inspection show no sign of swarm cells you might try adding a ventilation box on top of the upper honey box. They simply give a more fluent air flow for cooling and honey capping.
Make sure to move bees around during inspection. Sometime the bees will be covering swarm cells and they can be hard to detect.
Good luck!


Tough to tell from the picture but your hive looks like this?


I found fitting a slatted rack (search it here)did reduce bearding considerably.