View Full Version : possible robbing
06-05-2004, 03:48 PM
I am so new at this and not sure if my bees are being robbed or if this is normal. 2 days ago I had hundreds of bees hovering around the front of the hive. There doesn't seem to be any fighting. I put a reducer on the front. It is around 85 during the days right now. Will this hurt the hive. It is pretty new. I just got them up and going around the first of May. Thanks for any help.
06-05-2004, 04:18 PM
CM, I got my first bees in March of 03. I had a bad case of robbing that I think was brought on by spraying sugar water all over the place when hiving them. I saw lots of bees fighting and tumbling off the landing board and lots more climbing up the side of the hive before launching off. I'm no expert but if a lot are just hovering its probably just bees orienting themselves to the hive.
[This message has been edited by GalvestonCo (edited June 05, 2004).]
06-05-2004, 04:25 PM
Sometimes you see fighting and sometimes not. If a hive is getting badly robbed they sometimes give up. A lot of bees in front may just be because of a traffic jam too. Make sure of what you think is happening. If you have the time to spend, sometimes you can seal up the hive after dark. If there are still a lot of hovering bees at the entrance the next morning, they are probably robbers. If not, then they are just foragers. Just open it up. If they were robbers, then leave it closed until the robbers give up, probably several hours later, and then open it back up.
You can also use a screened entrance like Brushy Mt sells but with a notch in the top so the bees can get in. The robbers, trying to go by smell, have trouble finding their way in. The resident bees came out that way and find their way back.
Or you can "Daisy" them (thanks Daisy). Rub the entrance with Vicks vapo rub. The smell seems to mislead the robbers.
06-06-2004, 06:56 PM
Michael, I'm still learning here. When I saw robbing and the bees fighting there was obviously something wrong. Thanks to your advise I got it stopped. This spring, second year, I saw a great many bees hovering in front of both hives but when I watched for a while everything else looked normal. Bees washboarding, bees with pollen coming in, etc. I think it was just the explosion of new bees leaving the hive for the first time. I'm slowly learning there can be multiple reasons for the bees activities and find it very fascinating.
06-08-2004, 11:48 AM
Thanks for all the help. Problem has been resolved and the bees are doing great now. Kathy