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Thread: Hot hot hive!!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    Indiana
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    Exclamation Hot hot hive!!

    Man, I have this hive that's done rather well through the year, but it's always been a bit on the hot side. I started it this spring with a nuc from GA. When you lift the telescoping cover off a few bees lift off immediately and give you a good bonk, and while you continue to work on the hive there's always a good buzz of activity around you. This is compared to my other 4 hives that really could care less about you.

    Today I went to check on them and see if they needed a new super or not, and what's going on in general. It had been a few weeks so I wanted to know if they had filled the 5th super, or at least finished capping the 4th. By the time I was down to the brood boxes it almost sounded like it was raining out enough bees were bonking into my helmet. After seeing that the 5th super was pretty much empty and the 4th was about half capped I put her back together. I checked on a couple of other hives and went inside to cool down.

    A couple of hours later I went into the garden that's about 100 feet away from the hive and got 3 bee stings withing a minute of two. That was the final straw! I called a local beek and asked if he had a queen he could sell me, that's just too much for me. He did so I went back out to find that queen and pinch her little head off.

    Man! That was an experiance. I finally ended up with 2 veils, duct tapped close on all sides, duct taped the boots. I still ended up about dozen stings on my ear, nose, shins, etc. Though I did find the queen, and she's very flat. When I was done the bees followed me back to my work shop so I ended up walking the half mile trail through the woods smoking myself hoping the bees would just leave and head back to the hive. I finally ducked into the house in my bee suit with only a dozen bees buzzing around.

    Very tempting to go visit the hive with a can of wasp killer....Let's just hope the calm down a bit...I plan to try introducing the new queen on Monday, let's hope it works. Now I wonder if I'll be able to go outside and do chores...
    www.geekfarmlife.com -- Geek.Farm.Life Podcast, The story of two geeks who move to the country, what could go wrong?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    Troupsburg, NY
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    I'd attempt to introduce her tomorrow, I wouldn't wait til monday to do it. If you put her in tomorrow morning, they may not have started queencells, and that would help you out alot. Make a push in cage out of #8 wire, and then fetch a frame of capped brood out of the hive. Take it to your workshop, and gently let the queen out of her cage onto the frame of brood, then put the push in cage over her, and some emerging brood, try to get an open cell of nector if at all possible. Then push the cage into the face of the frame, make sure she can still move freely, and don't put any attendants in with her. Replace in the hive, and then leave alone for at least ten days, 14 would be better though. Then check to see if she has been released and she is laying.
    "I reject your reality, and substitute my own." Adam Savage

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
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    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Danbury,Ct. USA
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    Mike has some good info.

    I had this situation. Here's what I did. I put all the capped brood in one super. First I brushed off every bee from these frame, than I put a QE on top of the hive and this new super over it. By the next day all the nice nurse bees will have found their place on the brood and you know the queen is below the QE. Move this as far from the first hive as you can get in this yard. Give them a queen, bottom board and covers.
    Now you can do Mikes divide-and-conquer technique. Move the balance of the bees off the old stand for the night leaving the dead queen and an empty box for the foragers to come home to. Close them in at night. Next day clean them all thoroughly with soapy water. KILL KILL KILL.
    Now the older foragers are out of the picture and what is left are the nurse bees that wouldn't leave the balance of the brood. Put them back at the site where the murder took place. Give them a queen.
    The older foragers would have made life miserable for the next 6 weeks until new bees took over. They were irreclaimable and could have taken the fun out of bees; perhaps cause a lawsuit. You've made the acceptance of the queens more likely because young bees are more forgiving. Now you can balance brood between the two hives as needed. Later you can recombine if you don't want the increase. Consider that you are losing foragers at a time when you don't need them anyway. Dearth, you know.
    While you are brushing bees off the brood it would be helpful to this site to have a video or some photos made. There may be a number of bees in the air. Suggest telephoto lens. You will learn a lot about bees very quickly. Good luck.
    Trust me, you don't want to wait 6 weeks for the foragers to die.

    dickm

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Indiana
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    Hey Peggjam,

    I would to do it tomorrow, but the fellow who has the extra queen doesn't like to work on Sunday. (he's pretty religiouso) I have a spare queen in a nuc, but she's just been released and laying for less than a week so I really don't want to move her again. Is it that important?

    Thanks Michael, at least the queen is found and crushed.
    www.geekfarmlife.com -- Geek.Farm.Life Podcast, The story of two geeks who move to the country, what could go wrong?

  6. #6
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    Troupsburg, NY
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    It's not something you definitly have to do, but, by monday they will have queencells started, and you will have to remove all of them, before you introduce your new queen.
    "I reject your reality, and substitute my own." Adam Savage

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Indiana
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    Thanks Peggjam, will do.

    Dickm, there maybe a number of bees in the air??? Even without brushing bees of the brood yesterday it was insanely busy in the air.

    I work around the hive most days and the foragers haven't been a problem in general. We'll see how they are today, and if they are still rilled up then I'll kill them like suggested.

    Thanks everyone.
    www.geekfarmlife.com -- Geek.Farm.Life Podcast, The story of two geeks who move to the country, what could go wrong?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Princeton, West Virginia
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    478

    Question

    Andrew
    What is the hive location like? Is it in the shade most of the time? Is it in hot sun most of the day?

    It sounds like yours was a very hot hive and not worth trying to relocate without requeening.

    I have a hive I could count on stinging me several times. I requeened and never noticed a difference, so I moved it to a new location. Now they are a lot better. This hive was on the end of a stand that had 7 hives on it. The other hives are gentle. The old queen, I put the frame and all into my observation hive in case the requeening failed. As an observation hive they are very gentle.

    When I studdied the location I noticed that the hive had the shade of an apple tree on it most of the day. The bee's also had to fly around the tree.
    What I Smoke has a Sting to it

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Indiana
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    Hey KC,

    It's in the middle of a line (with little bend in it) of 4 hives and a nuc. It gets good morning sun, shade around midday and strong evening sun.

    That said, there's been goats and sheep grazing around the hives for the past week, but they have never bothered the hives in the past and vice versa. I also didn't notice any scratched on the entrance, but then again I also didn't look too hard. When I'm around in the day it's mostly covered with bees hanging out on the landing board anyways.

    None of the other hives were anything but docile, and this hive has always been a little hotter than the rest.

    Today they were calmer, I could work in the garden and take down the pasture fence about 20 feet from the hive and they didn't bother me. We'll see what happens when I put a new queen in tomorow night.

    Here's a picture about 2 weeks ago, I have my hand on the hive:

    http://photos.geekfarmlife.com/v/And...p4338.jpg.html
    www.geekfarmlife.com -- Geek.Farm.Life Podcast, The story of two geeks who move to the country, what could go wrong?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Princeton, West Virginia
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    478

    Default

    Good looking hive Andrew. How does the fall flow normally do?
    What I Smoke has a Sting to it

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Orlando, FL
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    I have a hive like that. They've always been a little hot to handle, but suddenly they are unbelievable.

    Upon closer examination, I found out why.

    There were at least 3 large wasps dead under the hive. They have apparently been under attack by wasps and this has made them go from bad to worse.

    Only you can make the determination as whether or not requeening is the right thing to do, but I for one am not too anxious to kill a queen.

    In my experience so far the hives that are a bit hot to handle are the healthiest ones. Apparently better able to cope with all the environmental stresses and parasites that annoy them than calmer bees are.

    For me, if given a choice between the bees that are too hot to handle sometimes, but otherwise healthy, (with good brood patterns and putting up a fair honey stores) and calmer bees that do not - I'll take the hot ones.

    Now the key word here is SOMETIMES. If they are too hot to handle ALL the time, then I would requeen too.

    You are the one tending them, so you know what is best for your bees, I just wanted to share my point of view.
    Troy

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Indiana
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    kc,

    I've been told it can be fairly unpredictable here. It's my first full year with a hive. Most people here seem to use it to just "top up" stores in the second deep. We'll see, I would like to get some at least a super or two.

    I hope it's good this year since this hive especially is very light in the deeps. Once I pull the supers in a week or two I'll start feeding them so they can build stores just in case. Plus maybe if they're gorged on sugar water they'll be calmer in general.

    Troy,

    This hive is close to my house, garden and pastures. Being stung, presumably by bees from this hive, when 100 or more feet away from the hive is just too much. If they were in the middle of a field away from people maybe, just maybe I would let them continue to fall. I have 3 hives with NWC (open mated though) queens from a local beek that are laying as well, coming up just as strong, and way way easier to work with.

    I also don't want those drones, if they are AHB crosses (even low percentages) I would rather not expose my other hives or other local beeks hives to AHB genes if I can avoid it. One of my nicer hives might superceede and I've got the same problem all over again.
    www.geekfarmlife.com -- Geek.Farm.Life Podcast, The story of two geeks who move to the country, what could go wrong?

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Indiana
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    Thanks for the advice everyone. I picked the new queen last night and got her cage installed in the brood nest with no trouble. I taped by boots and veil but didn't have any problems. Let's hope they accept her, I'm tired of lifting those supers on and off. (as an asside, turns out we're still getting some flow, and most people in this area tend to try and remove spring/summer supers by labour day)

    The only sting I got was at Danny's place picking up the queen. He works without veil, and while he was going through the nuc looking for the queen a girl shot out and got me on the temple. Oh well!
    www.geekfarmlife.com -- Geek.Farm.Life Podcast, The story of two geeks who move to the country, what could go wrong?

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