Removing bees from a house wall

Discussion in 'Beekeeping' started by foxtrapper, Jun 7, 2005.

  1. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Finished up my first one of these jobs, and I don't *ever* want to do another!

    Gad zooks, but that's a sticky messy job. Ended up being much bigger than I expected (of course). Not only were they in the wall where I expected, but they were up into the attic and behind the chimney, necessitating a lot more wall removal, outside.

    I may have gotten honey and a hive out of the deal, but that was the most expensive hive I've ever bought!
     
  2. Judy in IN

    Judy in IN Well-Known Member Supporter

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    :haha: Foxtrapper, I'm laughing with you, not at you. Sometimes those "free bees" are the most expensive kind. BTDT :rolleyes:
     

  3. Cara

    Cara Well-Known Member

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    Foxtrapper,

    We tried to capture (is that the right way to put it?) a colony out of my folks pumphouse wall this week but the bees just cleaned the combs we put into the hive and went on their way! What did we do wrong? We got a new queen, put her little home in the new hive with the marshmallow in the hole (per instructions from Glorybee lady) then pulled the wall off the building and put a good sized chunk of comb into the middle of the hive. They looked to be moving in for most of two days. The next day, dad cleaned out the rest of the comb and bees from the wall. The day after that, they were gone. Including the $20 Registered Italian Queen :p My mom said that maybe our red-neck bees didn't know Italian. :D So, we have two more chances to get a colony...grandpa's barn and our pumphouse. Any suggestions? The hive is for my son, and he's been waiting for his own bees for almost 3 years.

    Thanks for any help you can offer.
    Cara
     
  4. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper keeper of the bees Staff Member Supporter

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    What happened to the queen that was in the pump house to start with? The bees aren't going to stay in a hive with a strange smelling queen if their real mother is still alive in the pump house. They will just robb the honey back out of the comb you took.
    If your going to try to keep them in a hive, look for the queen, place a 1/8 hardware cloth cage around her so she isn't lost, my cage is 5" x 8" and 1/2 " high with a 1/2" to push into the comb to hold it there. At this point you want to save the queen so push that cage into hold. Cut that chunk of comb out as big as you can get to tie into a frame. Like the pictures.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    If you don't want to fool with cageing the queen find her and kill her then install your queen. Personally I'd keep the old queen if I knew it was an older surviving colony. They just maybe SMR, or slightly mite resistance.

    P.S. there are a lot cheaper Italian queens than $20.00
    on the market. I have gotten them from Kellies in KY. for $10.00 and they were great queens. Shumans also have very good queens.

    :D Al
     
  5. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper keeper of the bees Staff Member Supporter

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    :bash: OOP"S We used cotton masons line to tie the combs in the frames. Takes the bees about a week to fix the comb in 4 frames and start chewing the twine away. If your adding new frames and foundation feed them a 1:1 syrup till they won't take any more. Get gallon glass jars from the local pizza joint and put a few 1/16" holes in the lid and set it over the intercover hole. Like this

    [​IMG]


    Watch them they will tell you what they want.
    :D Al
     
  6. Cara

    Cara Well-Known Member

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    Ahhh! OK, that was the problem. We didn't get the old queen. So, if we had moved the hive after the first night (when there was roughly half the colony in there with the new queen) would the old queen with the other half-ish of the bees stayed in the wall of the pumphouse? Also, there is about a softball sized clump of bees left in the wall. Is the old queen probably in the clump? The rest of the bees have left.
     
  7. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper keeper of the bees Staff Member Supporter

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    I would say that if you had moved the hive 5 or 6 miles away when half the bees were in there they would have stayed. But it is hard to tell why they do what they do some times. More than likely you will find the queen in ther pump house still.

    We hived the last swarm we caught July 21st 2004 last year. It is a very strong colony today, so I feel you still have time to make that soft ball sized bunch of bees into some thing that will live thru winter if you treat them right.
    Let them fill two brood boxes if they are 9 5/8 deeps with winter stores of honey. Medicate them againest the mites and AFB before winter.

    :D Al
     
  8. Cara

    Cara Well-Known Member

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    That would be great! We are in Western Oregon, so there are flowers and very little frost until usually November. Hopefully that will give them enough time to get prepared. Mom and Dad bought some flat packages of food (it feels like thick molasses) but should we use the sugar and water instead? In addition? Oh and will it be a problem to move them here (10ish miles from the folks, btw) where there is already an established "wild" colony?

    Hopefully Grandpa can hold off on working on the barn until next spring so we can see if this hive lives before we bring his home. It has been in there at least six years, so there is probably lots of stuff to clean up. I am thinking what will happen is we will take what we can and Dad will spray the rest....I'm actually a little surprised he's being so patient with this project! The other thing about grandpa's is that it's in a building he's repairing, not taking down, so we'll have to be much more careful while we're capturing the bees.

    Thank you so much for your help!!
     
  9. schao

    schao New Member

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    Hi! my name is stephanie and I live in Placentia, CA - residential urban area.
    I would like to get your advice and help about the bee situation I got now.

    Over this past Sunday, suddenly around 2 pm I notice a HUGE swarm of bees near my front door. upon investigation, I see that they gather around the patio/ eave overhang next to the wall of the garage, and that there must be a crack or hole in my garage wall because I see and hear bees buzzing in the garage. (i did not agitate the bees in any way and left the garage door open so they can leave.) I was glad to see that by 7 pm or rather by 8:30 pm (complete sundown) the bees have "disappeared". (according to the bee removal companies, the bees must have slept inside the wall....) I did not do a complete inspection, but I didn't see anything resembling a nest/hive at about 8 pm... this morning, at 6:30 am there were already again bees gather at the same area, and looks like increasing number.... I would like to save the $200-$300 the bee removal companies quoted me...so any advice?

    Please call me at my cell 562/307-7793 or just email me back at zaffred@yahoo.com.
    THANK YOU! I've read 6 books on beekeeping and numerous internet websites since Sun. and wondered if I can keep the bees -- become a beekeeper myself...
     
  10. Judy in IN

    Judy in IN Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Stephanie,

    If it were me, I'd keep the bees. If you know of any beekeeper's nearby willing to help you with some deep supers until you can get your own, that would be great!

    Did I understand you to say that the bees are IN the wall? Exactly what do you need to know? I guess I'm saying what do you want or what can we do for you via internet?
     
  11. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Fake! :haha:
    I can't imagine a hive removal job that looked so clean and neat. I know what my truck looked like after the job. And bare handed? Oye!
     
  12. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper keeper of the bees Staff Member Supporter

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    Well I never did say the pictures were from bees we took from a wall. I said that is how we tie the comb in a frame. The bees came out of a down tree. As for bare handed the proof is in the picture, many bee keeper don't care to use gloves. As for how clean it is we cut the comb out then only took the brood part to tie in the frames so the honey, THE drippy stuff didn't make a mess for us to work in. The honey filled comb was placed in a hive body with a 1/8 screen stappled to the bottom except one hole so the girls could get in and clean it out once it was set on the hive holding the girls and brood tied in the frames.
    No reason to have honey tied in a frame when it is the brood that draws and holds the girls to keep it covered. They get the honey to mend the comb in the frame.
    :D Al
     
  13. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Where'd my laughing smiley face go? All I see is a red x

    I wasn't being serious when I said fake, that's what the smiley was for. It was tongue-in-cheek, nothing more.