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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    Auburn, NY
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    485

    Default Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Hi Everyone. I have a question for the experts. Five years ago I discovered a "wild" hive of bees on some family property. I visit it every so often and every time I go, the bees are buzzing around in large numbers seemingly very very healthy. They made a home in a cherry tree that is still alive, but has a good size hole maybe 7-8 ft up. How deep it goes is anyones guess. They have been there at least 5 years, likely a good deal longer. The area is what I consider quite good for bees. They are a stones throw from 7 acres of golden rod. My guess is that the bees have all they need to get through the winter with that.

    I have wanted to keep my own bees for several years now but am concerned that getting equipment and a package of bees might cause the wild hive to contract diseases/mites. I dont want to do anything to hurt the wild ones. They seem to have reasonable temperment as I can literally walk right up to the tree, within a few feet and they are not bothered by me.

    Also... I have limited time to care for bees. Seeing this wild hive makes me wonder if I can get equipment and leave the bees alone and collect a minimal amount of honey from them???

    Dan in NY

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Anthony, New Mexico USA
    Posts
    420

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    I would go with a Warre stile hive. They require minimum intervention.
    Also, get a pest resistant bee stock.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,084

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    >wild hive to contract diseases/mites.

    The wild hive already has mites. They are endemic. Most people seem to have the belief that the wild hive will give them to your domestic hive.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    larchmont ny usa
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    You should perhaps think about placing some swarm traps near those wild bees.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,879

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    The shape and contents of a wooden box have little bearing on how much intervention is required.

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaBees View Post
    I would go with a Warre stile hive. They require minimum intervention.
    Also, get a pest resistant bee stock.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Auburn, NY
    Posts
    485

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    I was thinking of trying to somehow capture a swarm. Swarm time is coming up in NY in a few weeks? Swarm trap is a hive with bee sent in it?? Im really quite new at this, having read a few books. Going to the library tomorrow to find more books.

    Thanks.
    Dan

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Livingston County, NY
    Posts
    527

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Dan, search this forum for " Bee Scent". it's a honeybee attractant to lure honeybees to crops. I bought 16oz. ($23.90 after S&H) couple drops in a 1" ZIPLOCK W/ paper towel, poke a cpl of pinholes & place in deep brood box w/1 drawn frame & some undrawn frames. That's what I am going to try. I will certainly post any success or lack of, here. The thread I read was raving about it. Fairly cheap risk. I have many brood boxes to use. I think scouting out locations or talking with people that regularly see & get swarms is key to higher probabilities. search swarm lures on internet, way more time efficient that traveling to library. Also look up pest control people & get on their call list. I have one swarm I caught off the bottom of a lawn chair last yr, thx to a pest control biz.

    Great Lakes IPM Inc.
    10220 Church Road NE
    Vestaburg, MI 48891
    989-268-5693
    http://www.greatlakesipm.com/
    1-800-235-0285

    16oz. is a lifetime supply. I thought I would let beeks from my assc. use some & maybe take a swarm for the cost. not far from you in east livingston cty, homiebeek. Lb
    Last edited by lakebilly; 04-17-2011 at 07:17 AM.
    Rmns 1:16/Prv.3:5,6/ Beegan BK May 09/ Zone 5b
    I have NOT failed. I have only found many many ways that do not work!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    wolcott,ny,usa
    Posts
    82

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    i live just a half hour away from you dan i would be willing to help you out. give me a call at 315-594-1069. i live in wolcott ny. i also do cutouts. ive been doing them for 8 years.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    9,431

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Swarm time is coming up in NY in a few weeks?
    I was told to get your traps out now. The scouts have to find them two weeks before they swarm. I put my box out in the back yard a couple of days ago when it was nice and now we got winter again. I asked in another thread how many frames should be in the trap but didn't get an answer. Right now the box is split into two three frame sections and one two frame section. I can combine a three and a two to make a five frame section if that is better.

    sorry for off topic.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,990

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Hi Dan, you raise a very good point about not wanting to introduce anything undesireable to the bees in your tree. There is some evidence that bees in an area, will sometimes develop a sustainable relationship with the mites in that area. The other possibility is that not all is as it seems, the hive could have died out & been replaced by new bees any number of times.

    In any case, some caution about what you bring in is to be commended.

    If you go the swarm trap route, doing it in such a way it will work is the key and there is a lot of information on this site if you search for it. It is incorrect bees have to find the site 2 weeks before they swarm, they don't look for a new nesting site until after they swarm. You could in theory, get a swarm move into your trap just a day or two after you put it out, long as there is a suitable swarm in the area at the time.

    However the offer from QueenKing is invaluable you must take it. Not only will you get local bees but some practicle guidance actually doing it with someone, is worth untold amounts of reading, or even more.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    9,431

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    It is incorrect bees have to find the site 2 weeks before they swarm, they don't look for a new nesting site until after they swarm.
    I don't know where I read it but what I read was that scouts may be looking for possible nesting places at the point when queen cells are first started in the hive. At the time of the swarm the scouts take a consensus on what is the best choice and lead the swarm to that choice. Is this true, I don't know. Can someone prove it isn't true, I doubt it.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    5,990

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    No it isn't true. There is no scouting for sites before the hive actually swarms. And rather than try to prove your statement, you've demanded somebody else prove it isn't true, which you doubt anybody can do. I don't think that's a right way to do things.

    But anyway, you demand proof? Oh well, if you insist.

    It's right here on beesource but I'm not going to search it for you, you can educate yourself. Search swarm traps and if you do it enough you'll find cases where someone put out a trap and had a swarm in it in a couple of days. So the bees did not find it 2 weeks before they swarmed, as it wasn't there.

    However I don't believe everything on beesource, people say whatever they think, or repeat whatever the guy with 2 hives down the road thinks. I've based what I say on my own observations. When I've been asked to remove a swarm in an impossible location such as way up a tree, i've put a box somewhere near and have them move in the next day. They didn't find it 2 weeks ago either.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Auburn, NY
    Posts
    485

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Thanks everyone. Im furiously reading and trying to make sense of all things Bees.

    Dan

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Poplar Bluff, Missouri, USA
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    2,292

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Oldtimer, that sounds like proof to me!
    Regards,
    Steven
    "If all you have is a hammer, the whole world is a nail." - A.H. Maslow

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Peoria, IL USA
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Not to say that this is the "bee" all end all of experts but here is one opinion on how things happen.

    http://www.npr.org/2010/12/24/132311...-To-Beekeeping

  16. #16
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    Jul 2010
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    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Pretty good link BenjaminKeith!
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
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    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Pretty good link BenjaminKeith!
    Excellent link!

    Oldtimer, there is nothing in what you said and what was said on that NPR pod cast that excludes the possibility of the scouts looking for a new nesting place before the swarm. After all the scouts pick the best potential home for a swarm and if your box wasn't there two days before the swarm and now it is, only means in my mind that now they have a better opportunity then they had before. It doesn't prove they haven't looked prior to the swarm at least in my eyes.
    Last edited by Acebird; 04-18-2011 at 12:53 PM.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Well if you want to believe that, I'm not stopping you.

    They don't do what you say, but this is a democracy, choose whatever beliefs you like.

    Last thing I want is a big ugly argument over it.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM
    Posts
    663

    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    Acebird,

    Do the forum a huge favor and drop the subject of scout bees looking for a new home 2 weeks before they swarm. I tend to listen to those individuals who have taken the time to educate themselves. I can assure you that collectively those individuals are correct, in that scout bees are not sent forth until after the swarm has found a resting place. There is an old saying you might consider heeding, and I respectively submit: "It is wise to remain silent and be thought a fool, then to open your mouth and remove all doubt". No harm intended.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
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    Default Re: Introducing package bees near "wild" bees..

    A few days before the swarm, scout bees begin to actively search for a new home. They communicate potential new home sites to the hive by dancing.
    http://www.bees-and-beekeeping.com/h...ee-swarms.html
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

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