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Thread: Drumming

  1. #1
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    Apr 2004
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    Town of Lyndon in Western New York
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    Anyone ever tried "drumming"? I read about it somewhere - possible book by Morse. Does it work? Any theory on why?

    I was able to move the tree top feral hive I mentioned a few days ago. Bees are very gentle and began foraging hours of being moved (tree and all). I have placed a hive body on top of log, within inches of their opening. I'd like to see them move before they swarm. They have comb built within two inches of the opening and appear to have used up all the space.

    BTW, I've been able to let several of them walk on my hand & I can't seem to find a single mite. I should be able to see them with the naked eye, right?

    Thanx,
    Dale


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
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    >Anyone ever tried "drumming"?

    Yes.

    >I read about it somewhere - possible book by Morse. Does it work?

    Yes.

    >Any theory on why?

    Reaction to a threat? I don't really know, but it causes them to move up. Combined with smoke it's a way to get them out of a box or a tree or a bee gum into a different one. It won't make them stay, but it will move a lot of bees. Also if you can get the bees and the queen into the box and add an excluder and flip the old hive upside down then the combs are very usable and they are more likely to stay in the top box while hatching the brood in the bottom box and then abandoning it or reworking it.

    >I was able to move the tree top feral hive I mentioned a few days ago. Bees are very gentle and began foraging hours of being moved (tree and all). I have placed a hive body on top of log, within inches of their opening. I'd like to see them move before they swarm. They have comb built within two inches of the opening and appear to have used up all the space.

    Are there gaps between the box and the log? If so, fill them with something so it's all connected solid and that will help. The more communication there is between the two parts the more likely they will use it as a super.

    Is the log in the same position as it was in the tree? If it is they will use it well. If not they will not be able to use the comb very well and will have to either tear it out and rebuild it or use some other area. This will stress them some, but also may get them to be more interested in the hive.

    >BTW, I've been able to let several of them walk on my hand & I can't seem to find a single mite. I should be able to see them with the naked eye, right?

    If you know what you're looking for and have seen them before. But they are hard to see without practice. They just look like a freckle on a bee. But just because you don't see any doesn't mean there aren't any.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Eagle Creek, Oregon
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    Michael,
    you've mentioned several times that you use drumming to get bees to move up but have you ever used it to hive a swarm? One of the older and more highly respected members of the local beekeeping club claims it as one of his favorite tricks. A few years back he was able to demonstrate his method to several members of the club so now he has lots of witnesses, though I am not one of them. At the last club meeting he told about doing this in front of a crowd of people where a swarm had landed in a city park. City police looked on as he drummed the swarm into a hive. His method is to tap on the side of a hive body with his hive tool. He demonstrated a cadence of about one tap per second. He went on to say that it works for him about half the time. I didn't think to ask how long he drums before deciding whether it was working on any given swarm or how far he can call a swarm. I can see where if this succeeds the beekeeper would look like a real wizzard and if it fails he would look like a fool.
    George

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
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    South Mississippi
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    I have heard this about drumming also. We have a local beekeeper that does this. I personally have not seen him do it but I have friends that say they have seen him do it on several occasions.

  5. #5
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    I have not heard of using it to hive a swarm. I may consider trying it when the need arises.

    But I have used it to get them from one box into a different one.

  6. #6
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    Oct 2002
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    Any idea if it is the harmonic resonance (soundwave) in the air OR the vibration transmited through the structure that effects them to move?

  7. #7
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    I think it's the vibration of the structure. I always tap on the side of the box with either a hive tool or a pocket knife or a short fat stick.

    Seems like the box vibrating is the cause of them moving up. It's not like they panic and leave because of the drumming, they just move up.

  8. #8
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    Oct 2002
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    I think I will experiment this weekend. I have two gums that I need to empty out, I also have a dunbek I play on occasion.

    I am thinking that I may set at one end and play the drum and see if they have any inclination to move out. It worked on my ex

  9. #9
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    I usually combine it with a lot of smoke for good effect.


  10. #10
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    I still wonder about that "PEACE" pipe of yours...

  11. #11
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    Wonder all you want. If you want to try what I smoke it's the inner bark of the Osier red dogwood tree. Cut it when the sap is down in the winter and peel the outer bark and throw it away and then peal the inner bark and dry that. You won't get high, but it sure smells nice.

  12. #12
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    Oct 2002
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    Sad

    Guess I'll have to wait another eight months to strip bark

    Well, it's Havana Honeys until then.

    By the way, what does the dogwood smell like? When I was in Boy Scouts we tried dogwood bark, yeuck, that was gwadawful.



    [This message has been edited by BULLSEYE BILL (edited April 30, 2004).]

  13. #13
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    Kind of a clean smell. More reminicent of Sweet Grass than something spicy like sage.

  14. #14
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    Apr 2004
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    North Salem, NY
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    I've never heard of this... when you're drumming, do you drum the hive body you want the bees to move into, or the hive body you want them to move out of? why would bees move into a vibrating hive body? i guess i'm just a little confused

  15. #15
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    Aug 2002
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    I've always drummed on the one they are in, but it's not that it drives them AWAY, it just causes them to move UP.

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