Page:Jardine Naturalist's library Bees.djvu/203

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THE HONEY-BEE.

experience has satisfied us that the use of these noisy implements is by no means indispensable on such occasions. Ten swarms out of twelve, if let alone altogether, and suffered peaceably to take their own way, will alight on the first shrub, bush, or low-growing tree, that stands in nearly a direct line from the mouth of the hive, whatever may be their intentions as to any ulterior destination; and to defeat such intentions, if any such are threatened, let the swarm, as soon as it has settled on an accessible spot, be housed immediately, and shaded carefully from the sun. In half an hour afterwards, let it be removed to its permanent station in the apiary. If the swarm settle on the branch of a high tree, let a ladder be got and fastened to the trunk by ropes, and let the operator ascend it, carrying up with him a small bag, distended within by a slender hoop in which he will inclose the swarm. The operation will be facilitated, if the branch can be cut and brought down along with it. Sometimes the swarm, after alighting, returns in a few minutes to the hive. This happens when the queen has left, as she sometimes does, the settled group, and makes her way back to her original abode; the swarm will, in these circumstances, gradually follow her and return also, but will come off again next day, or perhaps the same day. Sometimes the bees return to the hive without alighting at all; and sometimes, unfortunately, the queen in such a case commits a mistake and enters a wrong one, while her followers crowd after her, and alight in myriads about the mouth and round the pedestal, without, however,