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5/6/13 update: First official swarm of the year was reported in Longmont on 5/5/13.
This is intended for the LSI team and the Honeybee Keep mentor students only. Others may not participate.
This is the swarm team phone tree and guidelines. Direct questions or comments to Don Studinski, but only after you have read this entire page which may already answer your questions.
Participation is by invitation and is voluntary. You are responsible for taking care of you. Your swarm coach is not responsible for your safety. You are. You are LIKELY to get stung. If you are not ok with that, then please do not participate. Your committment for participation is from mid April through end of June. You are required to provide your own protective clothing. You should keep these things in your car the whole season, ready to run any minute: bee suit, veil, gloves, nuc box with ventilation.
Picking up a swarm is a service that beekeepers "give" to their community no charge. But that's the case where it really is honeybees. If a customer "fools" us into running on some wasps or yellow jackets, then I would not hesitate to give them a bill. More on this below.
This is about more than just getting honeybees. It's about education for the participants and for the public that may be looking on. We will call all the participants until they request to be removed from the list, assuming they want to run for the education. We will always wear protective clothing to set a good example for anyone watching. Yes, I know it's probably not necessary. Too bad! Set a good example, kids may be watching.
This phone list may change during the season. New members may be added and someone may fall off. As these changes occur, anyone AFFECTED BY THE CHANGE will be notified by email. The list is who is on the team according to Don's latest knowledge. This is team work, both for getting swarms and for keeping this list accurate. If you know of something out of date here, please let Don know.
Swarms are intended for specific receivers in a specific order. See status below.
You may live in Golden and run on a swarm in Denver that is intended for a receiver in Boulder. You are expected to either deliver the swarm where intended or arrange for someone who can. This may cost you in terms of time and gas. Your expenses are not reimbursed. Please prepare accordingly. Catchers are those with beekeeping experience and should make the delivery just in case the receiver has no experience with bees. Catchers load the hive.
Here's how it works:
On beekeeping days, Thur, Fri, Sat, Don can play a primary role, but on the days Don is working for the devil, he has to lean on the Davids to help. Don gets a call about a swarm at some address in the Denver metro area. Don will get the address and phone number for followup. Don will start the phone tree by calling David Whitehead and David Braden. Each David will then call the people on their list, two people. Each of them call the people on their list, two or one. In this manner, we can call everyone in just minutes. If someone doesn't answer, please leave a message and make their calls for them. Assume they are not available and those people down the tree will be left out if you don't make those calls. Please make the call. Do not assume a text is okay.
David Whitehead will be the primary "follow up agent" to verify the details with the customer and ensure we really should roll. David Braden will be the secondary "follow up agent" just in case David Whitehead is not available. We commit to have a beekeeper on-site (for honeybees) within 2 hours of the original call to Don. If, for any reason, it seems like we will not make that committment, the follow up agent will keep the customer up to date about progress. Remember, customers are usually afraid. Personally, I also want to know these things:
- Are you sure it's honeybees? You can see a picture of a honeybee, a yellow jacket and a honeybee swarm here: Reference Articles. Refer the customer to the webpage and get them to confirm they are honeybees.
- How high are they? Consider whether you or the customer have the necessary ladder to get to the bees. There is no point in rolling on bees too high to retrieve.
- How big is the swarm? Football size or larger has a better chance of living. We can choose not to roll, but should give the customer an alternate contact, Colorado State Beekeepers Association.
- How long have they been there? Remember, they will not stay forever.
Generally, an experienced swarm catcher will be there to show new folks how to catch a swarm. These are:
- Don Studinski
- David Braden
- David Whitehead
- Ruth Rinehart
- Joel Studinski
- Neil Preister
Later in the year, you may feel comfortable running without a coach. That's fine.
- Don Studinski, 303-248-6677, Any area, calls David Whitehead and David Braden
- -David Whitehead, 303-725-0052, Any area, calls Ruth Rinehart and Neil Preister
- -Ruth Rinehart, 720-290-5715, Any area, calls Eric Smith and Denise Conrad
- -Eric Smith, 303-355-9553, Denver/Lakewood/Golden, calls Jes Saunders and Peggy Gates
- -Neil Preister, 720-413-6675, Golden, calls Spike Brown and Deb Neeley
- -Spike Brown, 720-480-9415, Lakewood, Jeffco & Denver calls Elena Stieve and Sid O'Connell
- -David Braden, 303-549-9787, Any area, calls Bobbi Storrs and Molly Turner
- -Bobbi Storrs, 720-299-7397, Any area south end of Denver, calls Susan Sommers
- -Molly Turner
- -Susan Sommers, 303-877-0274, Boulder / Longmont calls Chris McCune and Delicia Beaty
- -Denise Conrad, 303-653-5291, Golden, Arvada, Wheat ridge calls Brian McDonald
- -Jes Saunders, 720-877-4371, Golden calls Leslie Brown
- -Leslie Brown, 646-263-6480, Boulder and surround calls Rosemary Hegarty and Joel Studinski
- -Peggy Gates, 303-668-3761, Golden
- -Rosemary Hegarty, 303-656-8667, Boulder
- -Deb Neeley, 720-217-6263, Arvada
- -Elena Stieve, 303-919-0107, Wheat Ridge and surround
- -Chris McCune, 303-330-9237, Arvada & Golden
- -Joel Studinski, 303-775-7093, Wheatridge, Arvada, Golden
- -Sid O'Connell, 303-995-2388, Lakewood
- -Delicia Beaty, 720-771-4654, Arvada, Wheat Ridge, northern metro denver, Westminster, boulder, lakewood and golden
- -Brian McDonald, 303-766-3531, way to the East of Denver
We have no idea when your swarm will arrive. You should be prepared, now, hive positioned and leveled. Please try to be on site when we deliver. You may get an hour or so notice. If there is any difficulty delivering your swarm, we will move to the next receiver, but we will not eliminate you unless you ask us to.
Those of you who are new beekeepers, you may request coaching from Don, for a fee, if you wish. Detail are on the website under Services. Another option is to contact one of the coaches above. Don does not speak for them, nor does he set their prices.
- David Braden Forest renamed Broadway 5/11/13
- David Whitehead Biscay Way 5/11/13
- Ruth Rinehart Forest Rinehart 5/21/13
- Sid O'Connell Zinnia Street 5/13/13
Denise ConradLSI swarm trap 6/27/13
- Spike Brown
- Eric Smith
- Delicia Beaty
- Jes Saunders
- Susan Sommers
- Bobbi Storrs, caught her own first swarm at Pinehurst 5/7/13
- Molly Turner
- Valerie Gautreaux, 303-776-9538(home, weekend) 303-218-1058(work, weekday), can't run to fetch, receive only
- Chris McCune
- Rosemary Hegarty
- Brian McDonald
- Leslie Brown
- Peggy Gates (maybe)
- Don may take as many as he needs or wants to keep Honeybee Keep going. Diamond 5/28/2013. Oracle 6/13/2013. Utica 7/1/2013.