I had a birdhouse hive occupied since last April. In a paln to upgrade , I removed the back end of the birdhouse (opposite to the entrance) and insert it into a Langstroth hive. A space for three frames left at the back. When I carried the birdhouse I found it very heavy and when I opened it I found the combs saturated with honey. Is it time to remove honey and thus the birdhouse and install the rest of the frames?
The birdhouse is 10"*10"*12" H. The new hive is 10 frames Langstroth hive.
Is there a risk of a swarm to occur even after the expansion?
If anyone got an idea please advise.
PersonallyI would not put birdhouse into the hive because they will build comb around that thing which will make it harder to remove birdhouse later on. I would remove comb and secure it to the frames with some kind of strings. Another thing is to make sure the bees have enough food supplies otherwise queen will reduce laying eggs.
I agree with Andrey.
Lets concentrate on getting the bird house out of the hive.
You will need a smoker veil and protective clothing. Heavy cotton twine and a sharp knife.
Smoke the hive and the bird house. Take the bird house out of the hive. Take all the comb out of the bird house. Cut it with the knife at the top and remove in sheets if possible. Tie as many combs as you can to frames. You can put several pieces in one frame. You can take some of the honey for yourself but not all. Leave the bees three frames of honey and two frames of pollen and all the brood. Tie it to the frames as we discussed earlier and put it into the hive body. It is okay if the string covers the cells. You are going to wrap the comb in place with the strings. It is okay if it covers honey and brood the bees will move the string. Remove ALL comb from the bird house and get it away from the bees......if it has honey take it to the kitchen. http://beesource.com/ubb/smile.gif Put the frames with the combs into the hive.
Shake out all the bees from the bird house into the hive. Get all the bees out so you do not miss the queen. You might have to brush them out into the new hive. If you do not have a bee brush, you can use a clump of grass or several goose or duck feathers. When you get them all out of the bird house take the bird house away. Close up the hive.
I would also feed the bees so that they will make lots of wax to repair their comb. After tying the comb in those frames it will be messy and they will need lots of food to do the repairs.
Clean up around the new hive. Do not leave any comb or pieces of the birdhouse where the bees can find it.
I wish you great success,
Thanks for your replies, I just have a couple of questions:
1- How do the pollen and brood combs look like? I am afread I can not distinguish.
2-Is it easy to sew combs that are full of honey to a frame? I am afread they will crush in my hand.
The temp in the late afternoon here is around 35 deg C. When I removed a small piece of comb yeasterday the honey was very low in viscosity. I am not sure if this is due to the temperature or the bees make this honey this way.
Again I highly appreciate your replies which helped me a lot.
Here is a perfect example of the capped brood.
Partially cappedand uncapped brood
here is a good source for different kind of images:
[This message has been edited by Andrey (edited July 30, 2001).]