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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Flora,IL
    Posts
    2,644

    Default when and how to kill off the hive

    Okay posted here in commercial to avoid upsetting some...

    Recently Honey housholder mentioned he does away with his hives each year and takes all the honey....

    This year the honey flow is so bad, my hives on scales are LOSING weight.....

    that said. I am wondering how you clean out the hive, and when you decide its time??
    my first thought was to off the queen and allow all the brood to hatch and the bees die off, but that seems to me to open the window to SHB and wax moths???

    Dumping them seems to leave brood in the frames so???

    I belive I will have to destroy at least half my hives to allow me to save any at all.....

    And no feeding this long would not make sense from a monetary viewpoint.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,699

    Default Re: when and how to kill of the hive

    Feeding bees in a bad dearth or feeding cows in a drought/flood amounts to the same thing.
    When it comes to cows and a flood/drought i have experience. We had flodding last year and it took it's tole. In 2003 we had a drought, and vowed to not make the same mistakes we made in 2003. Thus our choice for last year. We had to decide to sell the herd or parts of it or buy hay. In the end we sold the cows for slaughter, took a serious beating.
    I think honey bees, if you are in it to pay the bills, must be valued in the same way. Cost out the cost to feed your bees and the cost to purchase new ones next year, and the damage done by bugs when the hives sit empty for a year.
    the pencil, paper, easure and calculator are an ag producers best management tools.

    That said, I think I would let them hatch out in the hives and eat what is there. This would lessen the damage done by the wax moths since the bees will clean out the comb. Next, as the hives get smaller, down size from a double to a single, switch out comb, empty for frames of feed that are still in the yard.
    As to the queen, in a dearth, she shuts down. The bees might decide to supercede her, let that happen, just knock down all but one cell. I picked this route because if the weather changes, there might be flowers later in the season, and you might kick yourself in the butt for destroying all. Wintering a single box might be to your benifit, if you get a fall flow.
    When we sold half the herd we did it in stages. First to save on pasture we sold any animals that were crazy or did not have a calf. Then we sold the old cows that would be iffy to make it through a hard winter. Then later on, after pulling the bull 2 months, we got the vet into to preg check the rest (november after the final hay numbers were in). Any open, any the vet thought were not genetically sound, we sold.
    I guess what i am trying to say is we did it in stages. This lessened the blow, allowed us to make a clear choice based on the hay we made. Depending on the # of hives you have, you might think it better to keep half or a third so you have some stock to build from in the spring.

    If you do plan to keep some, get pollen patties. With the plants under stress, the pollen will not have the protien and will be near the value of straw. The bees will eat it, and gain no energy from it...got that T-shirt. PM or post if you want more info on what we did to get through the flooding here.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, Ohio
    Posts
    851

    Default Re: when and how to kill of the hive

    I don't get rid of my bees until the first of Oct, here in NW Ohio. I have some yards I was still feeding two weeks ago. Just check one of them today and they had a super or two alreadly full. That is just how beekeeping is. One day nothing and the next everything is full. Somethings you have to wonder how they get it so fast. Beekeeping is farming, you plant the seed and leave the rest up to the BIG guy.
    Best of luck,
    Ron

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,699

    Default Re: when and how to kill of the hive

    If farming was only that simple...
    Last edited by Bizzybee; 06-30-2009 at 09:27 PM. Reason: Unnecessary quoting

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,148

    Default Re: when and how to kill of the hive

    If you're planning on keeping 1/2 the hives anyway, why not combine the weak with the strong. You might get more honey this year.
    Dan

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    mineral county,Montana USA
    Posts
    808

    Default Re: when and how to kill of the hive

    how many hives? you could probably find someone to trade empty equipment for the hives you have. i have empty equiupment that i would love to fill with bees.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,699

    Default Re: when and how to kill of the hive

    Does this help?

    Quote Originally Posted by honeyshack View Post
    Feeding bees in a bad dearth or feeding cows in a drought/flood amounts to the same thing.
    When it comes to cows and a flood/drought i have experience. We had flodding last year and it took it's tole. In 2003 we had a drought, and vowed to not make the same mistakes we made in 2003. Thus our choice for last year. We had to decide to sell the herd or parts of it or buy hay. In the end we sold the cows for slaughter, took a serious beating.
    I think honey bees, if you are in it to pay the bills, must be valued in the same way. Cost out the cost to feed your bees and the cost to purchase new ones next year, and the damage done by bugs when the hives sit empty for a year.
    the pencil, paper, easure and calculator are an ag producers best management tools.

    That said, I think I would let them hatch out in the hives and eat what is there. This would lessen the damage done by the wax moths since the bees will clean out the comb. Next, as the hives get smaller, down size from a double to a single, switch out comb, empty for frames of feed that are still in the yard.
    As to the queen, in a dearth, she shuts down. The bees might decide to supercede her, let that happen, just knock down all but one cell. I picked this route because if the weather changes, there might be flowers later in the season, and you might kick yourself in the butt for destroying all. Wintering a single box might be to your benifit, if you get a fall flow.
    When we sold half the herd we did it in stages. First to save on pasture we sold any animals that were crazy or did not have a calf. Then we sold the old cows that would be iffy to make it through a hard winter. Then later on, after pulling the bull 2 months, we got the vet into to preg check the rest (november after the final hay numbers were in). Any open, any the vet thought were not genetically sound, we sold.
    I guess what i am trying to say is we did it in stages. This lessened the blow, allowed us to make a clear choice based on the hay we made. Depending on the # of hives you have, you might think it better to keep half or a third so you have some stock to build from in the spring.

    If you do plan to keep some, get pollen patties. With the plants under stress, the pollen will not have the protien and will be near the value of straw. The bees will eat it, and gain no energy from it...got that T-shirt. PM or post if you want more info on what we did to get through the flooding here.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Flora,IL
    Posts
    2,644

    Default Re: when and how to kill off the hive

    Ahh some better replies..... and some peta fans...



    AS some have mentioned this is farming and manageing... my thought is simple, not leave a ton of bees on little honey to starve out or have to feed all winter...

    I will probably move most of the queens into 3 frame nucs for winter, hopefully that will leave me a few hundred frames of old brood/honeystores to either extract, or save for spring buildup.

    I have NOT given up on them yet, and am activily feeding for a bit yet for those who can't seem to read......


    What I was looking for was the method of reduction which would allow the queen to stop laying and the brood to hatch, and hopefully many of the remaining workers to backfill with hone before they die off anyway...

    I assumed that some here were eliminating the queen or confineing her sometime before the fal flow to maximize honey buildup. Bees that are not tending brood build up much better and faster honey stores.

    I had assumed that there was some methods out there, I have removed queens before for honey production, but your limited on how long you can do it before they it creates issues...... even confineing the queen can prompt laying workers in a large hive....

    I do have a 2 frame queen box that works fairly well... put her in and combine two strong hives into a great honey builder.... I think the term used most is a "powerhouse"....

    My goal was to find the best way to allow for no new brood, and let the bees clean out and backfill to the greatest effect, and how the timing of that may be monitored..



    AS for packages, if you need bees that bad, there are several suppliers that sell packages all year long. I don't sell packages as our state inspector never shows up....

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Montgomery county, Illinois
    Posts
    423

    Default Re: when and how to kill off the hive

    I'm just curious if you're talking about Fugate or the old inspector? From what I understand the other one got sick and had to give up the job.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Flora,IL
    Posts
    2,644

    Default Re: when and how to kill off the hive

    Actually Brenda, I have never met the new guy....... I live about 180 miles from him, and since I am on the FAR edge of his teritory (IL is really housed) I completly understand.... I am sure some day He/She will pop in...

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    27,210

    Default Re: when and how to kill off the hive

    Quote Originally Posted by gmcharlie View Post
    This year the honey flow is so bad, my hives on scales are LOSING weight.....

    And no feeding this long would not make sense from a monetary viewpoint.
    I think you should be patient. It is still early in the season, isn't it? Summer just started and there is the fall flow to look forward to.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Ellsinore MO USA
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: when and how to kill off the hive

    Anyone who is going to let their hive die off this fall contact me.
    I will gladly pick up the bees if there are sufficient quantities to make the drive for.
    I think ten hives would be the minimum.
    If you have 25 or more I am very interested.
    I am in SE Missouri
    Ernie Wells
    wells.ernie@gmail.com
    573-429-0222

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