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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Wheatfield, IN
    Posts
    2,069

    Post

    I don't have a trailer and probably won't get one right away. I was wondering if anyone has moved hives for pollination with a pickup truck? I'm talking about 20-25 hives max and I would only have to drive less than 15miles. Blueberries, pickles, etc all around me. I'd like to know if there are any experience gained tips that make it easier. Seems like a difficult way to move hives but that is really my only opt at the moment.

    Thanks,

    Dan
    Dan Williamson
    B&C Honey Farm http://www.flickr.com/photos/9848229@N05/

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, N.C.
    Posts
    5,080

    Post

    u-haul trailer, unless you are pollinating a flower bed with 2 hives max.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,327

    Post

    I think I could probably move 6 to 9 in a pickup if I needed to. You'll probably have to do at least two loads.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    West Newton, Pa.
    Posts
    915

    Post

    I've hauled as many as 8 hives in my pickup at one time. I don't really remember, but I don't believe I would have had room for more than that.
    Be Yourself, Everyone Else Is Taken!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    lewisberry, Pa, usa
    Posts
    6,080

    Post

    In a 8' bed (I don't understand anyone owning a truck with less than 8') up to 10 hives can be positioned correctly. This is taking into account telescoping lids which take up more room than migratory lids.

    First three hives go against the cab, slid straight back as you would be looking at the front of the hive. Hives number 4 through 7 would be slid sideways two in a row. The final three hives would be as the first three, side by side.

    You can double stack if you strap and do not have a cap.

    I move many hives with my truck, and for larger loads, a trailer is used. I also have gone back to 1-1/2 hives for pollination. I made many of my hives two deeps a fews years back, and killed myself trying to move them. 1-1/2 full of honey can still be managed and moved. The hives that are not scheduled to be moved or are permanently place, are configured as needed and range from a over-wintered 1-1/2 to anything up to 3.

    If you close up the hives, than move your truck right up next to the hives, than lifting them up onto the tailgate is not much of a problem. Having to carry them any distance is the problem. Good planning makes the job easier.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lake county, Indiana 46408-4109
    Posts
    3,536

    Post

    Dan
    Didnt I show you my Hillbilly hive loader when you were here, I dont move hives very often so I dont need an 8` bed but I did bring 36 deeps and three doubble hives home from Michigan a while back 125 miles and in a 6` bed
    Ed, KA9CTT profanity is IGNORANCE made audible
    you can`t fix stupid not even with duct tape

  7. #7

    Post

    I can fit 12 colonies on the bed of my p/u and another 14 on the next layer. If I were brave I could put a third layer of 14 no problem.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Whitefield, Maine USA
    Posts
    6,624

    Post

    http://www.sweettimeapiary.com/images/lotta_bees.jpg

    I put 8 hives in my short-bed pickup without er... trouble.

    George-
    Dulcius ex asperis

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
    Posts
    407

    Post

    Dan,
    I have moved bee's up in your area with a pickup truck...had to make several trips. The truck is not difficult, just can't carry as many hives at once as with a trailer. It's not so bad if you have one person to position the hives in the truck while 2 others load the hives onto the truck.
    Barry
    Barry
    KC9TER

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Plano, North Texas
    Posts
    318

    Big Grin

    I moved two TBhives today in my pickup. It was an adventure on several levels.

    1. We saw a big feral boar near the hives, and that's always a little bit exciting. He moved away, though, so it was not a problem.

    2. I built the hives with a screen bottom. I wanted to use 1/8" hardware cloth, but all the hardware stores have gone to pre-bundled rolls of hardware cloth and the smallest they have is 1/4". Later I bought out the last of 1/8" from a big hardware store, but when I built the hives I put two layers of 1/4" on so they are offset a little. Guess what? The bees go through it easily. So when I screened the entrance, bees were still going in and out through the bottom. Well, I built in provision for a fiber board bottom for wintertime, so I slid that in. It looked like a lot of the bees didn't know how to find the entrance - they wanted in through the bottom. We finally gave up and just took the hive with bees clustering on the bottom screen.

    3. It is HOT. I kept the hives in the shade as much as I could, but when I left the farm I had about a mile or more to go on rough, dirt roads. I took it nice and slow to avoid stress to the comb, knowing all the time that they were getting hot.

    I arrived at home with the hives 2 hours later to find that a few topbars (fortunately without comb) had worked loose from the hot duct tape and fallen inside the hive. I opened the entrance right up and the bees poured out and bearded all over the front. I should have taken a photo, but I didn't.

    Two hours later, I watched bees coming in with their pollen baskets crammed full of pollen and they were busy as little bees.
    It is dark now. Some of the bees are still hanging in a clump from the bottom screen under the hive entrance but all seems well. It's hard to focus when it's dark, but here is a shot of the cluster under the entrance: Bee Cluster

    Incidentally, my bro-in-law and I each have one hive in our back yard, now. It was breaking the bank to drive that big pickup so far to the farm every week to check on bees (not that the bees NEED it). We still have a hive out there, and a feral hive in a tree that we will extract bees from now and then. Also, we have 8 swarm lure boxes hanging in trees. The bees out there are bringing in loads of nice, light honey right now. I'm not sure what they are finding, although there are still sweet clover plants out there with a few blooms. Here in town they will find plenty of yummy flowers, I'm sure. [img]smile.gif[/img]
    "Before I speak, I have something I'd like to say. . . . I will try to keep this short as long as I can." Yogi Berra

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Perkasie, PA
    Posts
    1,998

    Post

    Anyone out there have any good tips on moving hives? I dread it and would welcome ANY suggestions on how to make it easier....especially in a compact car

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,361

    Post

    Dan, I use an 8 X 16 and a 5 X 10. They are low and have a ramp at the rear. We use a 4 wheeler and run singles so haul 4 on at at a time. The 2 axle has electic brakes which I would now not be without. Much easier to load than a truck, no lifting, I can drop the trailer at a yard in the middle of the night and unload early in the morning, and I can haul 120 singles on the larger one. I would advise you to get one bigger than you think you'll need. It took me 2 years to outgrow the 5 X 10 and added the 16' which is quickly getting too small. Bee operation have a way of getting away from you. A net is a neccessity!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,336

    Post

    Usually everything that can go wrong will go wrong. Figure out where the hive is going to slide/fall or whatever and try to put it there to start with. [img]smile.gif[/img] When I put one hive in a small trailer I try to fill in the space around it with empty boxes so it won't slide. I try to nail the hive together AND strap it together. I dont' trust either one. Seal it well with #8 hardware cloth. Have lots of ventilation. A front door (like Brushy Mt sells) is nice. A screened lid is also nice. If you tane a 3/4" by 3/4" board and build a frame and cover it in #8 hardware cloth and nail it on for the lid you'll have a lot of top ventilation.

    Remember, bees can get out of a 1/6th inch sqaure hole. That is not very big! I always PLAN on the fact that SOME bees will get out, but also try to make sure none get out. A stapler (J21 preferably or a T50 as a second choice) is very helpful as is a lot of #8 hardware cloth. Screen door scren will work, but not as well as the #8.

    Try to drive like you have a hot cup of McDonalds coffee between your legs. No, not to try to sue them, to try not to get burned. Still you almost always end up having to stop too soon or turn too fast because of some other idiot on the road, so try to have it tied down well enough that it won't move and assume that it will. [img]smile.gif[/img]

    If I were moving a hive in a small car the first thing I'd do is break it down. Steal most of the honey. Reduce it to minimum size and still have all the bees fit comfortably. An empty box makes for a lot of room but little weight and that's a good thing. I'd wedge some empty boxes or something so the hive CAN'T move even if you hit the brakes. Then try never to hit the brakes.

    Wear a veil. Get one you can see well enough out of and wear it even if there aren't bees loose. You can't afford to be panicked about a bee in your face while you are driving.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Perkasie, PA
    Posts
    1,998

    Post

    Thanks a bunch Micheal....all very useful tips. So far I've moved hive 3 times (once in a corolla). Right now, moving 8 hives at once in a pickup would be a great boon. Last time I tried using nylon moving straps (disaster) and have since gone back to some really large staples I got from a catalog. A commercial beek told me he uses straps with success, so maybe I'll give them another try. As far as lessening the load, my strategy is to try moving in the early spring when the bees have eaten up most of the honey.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, N.C.
    Posts
    5,080

    Post

    First, have good equipment, without unplanned exits. I use the little 1 1/4 inch frame nails toenailed in each corner to hold the box to the bottom board or the box below it. I made a bunch of robber screens from Jon's plans, and changed their name to moving screens. Best thing I ever did for moving hives.
    The only acident I have had is the top coming off. I haven't cured that problem yet. Then I install the moving screen in the dark, smoking lightly if they are frontporching. Once screened, you can move them that night or wait till daylight. Other then losing the top, I have not lost a bee since Jon posted the plans for the screen. DOUBLE THANKS, JON. >>>Other then moving a swarm in a cardboard box in my suv. We won't talk about not taping the bottom of the box sufficiently<<<

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Perkasie, PA
    Posts
    1,998

    Post

    I think that I've got the tops part of moving "nailed down". I staple some hardware cloth over the oval hole of the inner cover (on the "up" side) and then drive a nail through each conner of the inner cover, into the topmost super. So far this has worked well. I had similar experiences moving a swarm in the only box handy (an empty beer case).

  17. #17
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    1,933

    Post

    2 single deep hives with teloscoping cover will fit in the trunk of a Honda Civic. Just so you know.

    I usually use ratchet straps moving hives. I really crank them down and don't have any problems tilting them and such.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lake county, Indiana 46408-4109
    Posts
    3,536

    Post

    "I usually use ratchet straps moving hives. I really crank them down and don't have any problems "

    Just make sure you run the straps around the sides NOT the ends,the landing board will give it an uneven pull and it will slip, I am just gald they were in the back of the truck
    Ed, KA9CTT profanity is IGNORANCE made audible
    you can`t fix stupid not even with duct tape

  19. #19
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    1,933

    Post

    Yes, sides.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
    Posts
    9,123

    Post

    Don't forget weight issues. A good colony weighs 100# or more. Putting 26 on a pickup as whitebark has done will tax most pickups big time. 2600# taxes even a one ton.

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