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Uniting Bees Using A Peppermint Flavoured Spray

This is a very similar process from the flour dusting technique but is the liquid version.

Among the kit boxes in my van there are several pump action spray bottles (sold for misting plants). One of these bottles contains water which has had a peppermint sweet dissolved in it (Fox's Glacier Mint).

This method can be used to unite a swarm to an existing colony or to unite colonies of unequal size.

If one or more swarms are involved they are srayed with the slightly sticky liquid at the time of collection.

If uniting a swarm to an established colony I first remove and dispose of the swarm queen using generous misting to keep the bees basically in the swarm box. I open the main colony and remove each frame in turn squirting peppermint water over all bees and comb faces. When all bees are sticky I throw the now queenless swarm into the brood box with the other lot of bees and rebuild the hive.

If my objective is to unite two lots of bees that are already on frames then I take out one frame from each box alternately and give each side of each frame a generous burst of spray mist and then place in the new brood box.

I have actually achieved several things in this process:-

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