Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: New bees

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    dargaville
    Posts
    3

    Post

    Greetings from New Zealand,
    I have just got my first hive and bees, but after getting it home and starting the first inspection, I have found that the frames are well and truly glued together.The hive boxes are also fairly old and rotten in places. The first frame I tried to remove collapsed, and as the bees seemed to be getting a little angry, I closed it all up and let them settle down.

    The idea was to transfer the bees over to the new set of hives and frames I had spent the last week preparing.

    What should I do now? Thank you in advance for your help.
    Simon

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    crown point, NY, USA
    Posts
    971

    Post

    Hi Simon,

    It sounds like it may be one of those things that you will have to just prepare to do the hard way. I hope you have a smoker. Start by smoking the girls. But before I can advise you I need a bit more info. You will not bee keeping any of the old boxes right (rotten)? What type of hive are you using (langstroth, ect.)??? Are any of the frames salvagable (the wood part)??? What type of foundation is in the combs plastic or wax??? Did you have a method in mind if you need to remove combs and install in new frames? Do you have enough equipment (boxes, frames) if you need to transfer?

    Clay

  3. #3
    BILLY BOB Guest

    Post

    Hi Simon,

    Welcome to Beesource. Don't know how many replys you are going to get today. The 27th is a holiday here.

    The best I can offer in advice for removing the frames; keep working them until they are lose. Work from the side that has some space between the frame and hive wall. Even if it is glued to the wall it will give you a point to start from. Use your hive tool to remove the bee glue and pry between the WALL and the END BARS. Once you get the first frame out it's all down hill from there.

    As far as replacing the frames there are several ways to do it and it's up to you on which one you want to do. 1st you can shake the bees into the new hive, with the new frames. Being left with the old frames, you can through them away, melt them down for the wax, or leave some of the bees on them and use them to start a new hive. Keep about 1/2 of the bees on the frames if you want to start a new hive.

    Another option is to remove the frames that are not being used. This can take up to a full season to do. I think New Zealand, is going into spring. With winter past, some/most of the frames will be empty. You want to remove them first and replace them with the new frames/foundation. At the same time place one or two new frames in the middle of the cluster, or between the frames that are being used. Now, be carful when you break the cluster, I don't know what your weather is like there. If it is still getting cold at night I would only put 1 frame in the middle or maybe none. You will have to feel the situation out for yourself. The main goal is to push the old frame outward while placing new ones in the center of the hive. You want to put new ones in faster than the bees can work them, in hopes of having them abandoning the old frames. This can be a problem, sence the bees will want to stay on the older comb. Once a frame has little or no brood, and honey, remove it.

    I hope this helps. Whatever I may have missed someone will come along and fill in.

    BB

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,593

    Post

    Also on a hot day the propolis (glue) will be more sticky but soft. So on a hot day you can pry very slowly and be patient and pry them apart. On a cooler day the propolis will be more brittle and will pop more when they come apart. I don't remember ever having a frame come apart on me when prying farmes apart. Are you sure you are prying the right part in the right direction? Also, you may have come across a frame that is cross combed and the comb runs to another frame and pulled the comb out.

    If it's spring and I wanted to replace it all (eventually) I agree with what has been said. If it's empty, scrap it. If it's full of nothing but honey, brush the bees off and scrap it for honey. (put it in a bucket with a lid for now and smash the comb and strain it later). If it has brood in it, I would try to just put the frame, as is, on the outsides of the brood box so they can hatch and then the bees will fill it with honey later. Put new frames in the center. If the old frames of brood break or fall apart, just use string or rubber bands to hold them together. The bees will stick it back together with propolis and wax.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    dargaville
    Posts
    3

    Post

    Thanks for the advice,
    We are at the end of spring start of summer, but the weather has not been too good, wet and windy. I am in the north of the North Island so sub tropical, but you wouldn't guess it the moment.

    I have 4 Langstroth boxes, full depth, with 40 frames of foundation. I am not planning to keep the old hive boxes as they seem past their best. I am not sure if the frames are salvageable? I will wait till it is warmer and have another go at removing them.

    I am new to beekeeping, and half way through a two year apiculture course. All the written stuff has left mean wanting to get on with the practical bit.

    Thanks again Simon

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    brown county,indiana,usa
    Posts
    571

    Post

    i would probably leave the bees in the old boxes/frames and put one of your new deeps with frames on top,let the bees move up into it on their own. this way you woun't disturb the colony too much,or risk of damaging the brood nest or smashing the queen.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,593

    Post

    I like old half punky boxes. The bees like them. If they aren't strong enough to move around on a hive, they make great swarm boxes because they have years of "bee" smell in them. I use them until they fall apart.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Enfield,Ct.
    Posts
    470

    Post

    An old beekeeper told me this trick for jammed up supers.It ticks off the bees a bit so a beesuit and veil are required.

    Cut two pieces of 2x4 just narrower than the short side of the inside of the box(14 1/4 for Langstroth)

    Lay outer cover right side up on ground.

    Set super sideways on cover with frames horizontal and kneel on top with bottom of frames away from you.

    Lay 2x4 at right angle to frames at the point where the bottom bar meets the side bar and tap with a hammer.Work one side and then the other.

    When frames extend about two inches,place the other 2x4 under the other side bars and tip super over onto the 2x4's.The 2x4's will hold the frame ears above the edge of the box and you can pry the frames sideways.

    If this still doesn't work you can drive all the frames out as a unit,remove the two end frames,and drop the unit into a cleaned super and pry from there.

    Most likely the queen and the brood nest is in the center and she will be protected.Take your time and try not to squish to many bees.

    I bet you will find the frames to be fine once you scrape the propolis and extra comb off


    I see others have recommended waiting for warm weather but I find that propolis and burr comb scrape off a lot easier when they are cold and crispy.

    Jack

    [This message has been edited by Jack Grimshaw (edited November 28, 2003).]

    [This message has been edited by Jack Grimshaw (edited November 28, 2003).]

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,593

    Post

    I didn't really say if I thought it was better hot or cold, but it is different and depending on the amount of propolis and the consistency of it (some is gummy and stick and some is more hard and dense) it may be easier hot or it may be easier cold.

    But if I'm doing it when it's hot, I try to use more patience. If I'm doing it when it's cold I rely more on it being brittle and prying more quickly and suddenly.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    McMinnville, TN, USA
    Posts
    716

    Post

    I like the idea of letting the bees draw out the foundation and them moving up on there own. Since you are at the start of summer you will need all the strength you can get to get them upto speed. If your hive is a double lang you could make a split.
    J.C.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads