Holy Bee's

Discussion in 'Beekeeping' started by Scott in Florida Panhandl, May 15, 2004.

  1. Scott in Florida Panhandl

    Scott in Florida Panhandl Well-Known Member

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    Joined:
    May 10, 2002
    Location:
    Florida
    About 2 months ago we had a swarm of bees take up residence in the gable of our church, aprrox. 40' off the ground. They are inside the boxing. We've tried caulking their entry points but they just find another entry. So far we're having no luck. It wouldn't be a problem except they are coming into the sanctuary, which tends to make church a little more exciting than usual at times. Is there anyway to lure them out? Ideas?

    Thanks,
    Scott
     
  2. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Location:
    Kansas
    I have never seen this, but I have HEARD of making a wire cone at the entrance. The bees can fly out but cannot find their way in again. A hive is set up near the entrance with a queen in it. Eventually the lost bees join the other hive.

    Since no bees can get back in, I suppose eventually the bees inside the building starve. :(

    Or, the side of the church can be opened and the bees removed comb and all. A beekeeper will remove them, but most will not mend the building afterwards.
     

  3. Billy Bob131

    Billy Bob131 Active Member

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    May 11, 2004
    Location:
    Georgia
    It is better to have the bees and comb removed. If the bees who take care of it are removed or killed, and the comb and honey is left within the walls you will have a real mess on your hands. The hive beetles and moths will get in there, well they will most likely be there already, but the bees keep them in check. The moths will start breaking the comb down; they will then spin cocoons causing wood damage. The broken down comb will have a better chance of melting and getting into the gypsum board (sheetrock). This will cause the walls to stain. The only way to repair this is to replace the sheet rock. It does take time for the sheet rock to stain but it will happen, just give it time. Most of the beekeepers can tell you the damage that the moths can do to the inside of a wooden hive. One moth isn’t that bad, but thousands of them can really pit the wood up.

    At the same time the moths are doing their thing the Small Hive Beetles (SHB), will lay eggs within the comb. The larva of the SHB help to break the comb down too, but the droppings that they leave behind will cause the honey to ferment. Give the internet a search of SHB and you will see pictures where the honey is boiling out of the hives. It is sooo nasty. This does have a rather nasty smell that goes with it. Add to that it causes the wood to rot, don’t forget the moths have pitted it all up.

    If you call an exterminating company, they will most likely tell you not to spray a honey bee colony for the reasons above, and that an often spraying doesn’t kill them anyway. You can call your county extension service, local exterminating companies, or local and state beekeeping association to see if any beekeepers in your area do removals…be warned it will cost you. Few do it for free, or the ones who do it for free are still trying to get some experience. The bees by themselves are not worth the time to do a removal.

    Make sure they are willing to give you a free estimate, and repair/replace the area after they are done. Most will guarantee that the bees will not return to the spot where they were removed. Bees will often return to an area that bees have lived in.

    BB
     
  4. Thanks Billy Bob, sounds like we've got work to do.

    Scott