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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Omaha, NE
    Posts
    76

    Question Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    I'm going with a friend who is removing a colony from an apartment building. According to the manager, the colony has been there for two years. I'm expecting to see/get a large number of bees and honey stores that will be mine once we get them removed. Obviously, these are survivor bees so I want to keep them and don't have an option of waiting till spring. I currently have four colonies, two of which can use a boost in both numbers and additional honey.

    My questions are: 1) Should I combine the apartment bees with one of my "weaker" colonies?
    2) Should I establish them a my 5th and new colony?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Omaha, NE
    Posts
    76

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    Sorry Mods... just realized that this post should go in the "cut-out" forum... please move and thanks.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Washington County, Maine
    Posts
    2,871

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    You note you don't have the opportunity to wait until spring which would be your best option. I imagine that you must be at or close to the end of the bee season in Omaha - and as such the bees won't have much time to arrange their new home for winter. I don't think they'll make it through.

    As for adding the bees to some of your other colonies - I would only do this if I was 100% sure that there were no diseases or pests coming along with them. Don't be too sure that they are marvelous survivor stock - they could be a current year swarm that took residence in a spot where a hive died out last winter. Be optimistic sure, but validate your assumptions with observations.

    As a general rule cutouts at this time of year are worth it only if you are being paid for your time. The bees have little or no value. Sorry.
    Master Beekeeper (EAS) and Master Gardener (U Maine CE) www.beeberrywoods.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM
    Posts
    665

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    "the honey will be mine, once we get them removed"...

    to me thats a bad sign right out of the shoot. I do a lot of cutout removals and generally the goal is to remove them safely and keep them alive. In order to do that they will need the honey a lot more than you will I'm afraid. Your odds of cutting them out this late in the game having them survive are slim. They have already prepared one brood nest for winter and won't have time to do that again. I always try to preserve the cutout genetics and not combine them.
    "Tradition becomes our security, and when the mind is secure it is in decay".....Krishnamurti

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Omaha, NE
    Posts
    76

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    Sorry if you took the quote wrong. I no intentions of consuming a drop of their honey. What I take will be put into the hive they get transferred into.
    Last edited by honeyman46408; 10-19-2011 at 11:30 AM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Bergen, Norway
    Posts
    248

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    If you think they have survivor genes, then you should not combine them with other hives. In that case you only get the worker-bees, but the genetics are carried on by the queen.

    IOW - I think this should be your 5'th hive.

    Alternatively, you could set it up as a new hive, and combine two of your existing hive so that the new hive gets some stores and fresh brood, while one of your other hives also gets a little extra.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Spokane, Washington, USA
    Posts
    722

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    Let them over winter...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Bellingham Washington, USA
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    I realise the original poster said he could not wait for spring, however I am in a very similar situation except that I can wait.

    This is my first year. So while I do have my bees to observe I have no experiance in what to look for in terms of spring build up and swarming.

    In addition the hive I am looking at cutting out is both much larger than my first year hives and in a warmer location. In short, how early can I do a cut out? Any tips on what I should be looking for in the weather, plants or bees?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    JACKSON OHIO
    Posts
    485

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    when you see drones

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,884

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    [QUOTE=garyk1398;719534 Obviously, these are survivor bees [/QUOTE]

    I would not call a two year old hive, survivor bees. Maybe two years ago someone installed a package which quickly swarmed and moved into the apartment. That makes the queen only two years old. In my situation I call a continuous five year hive a survivor because many die after two or three years.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Sheboygan, WI, USA
    Posts
    127

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    I would do the cutout and put them in a nuc if you can. Then overwinter like this guy.....
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wrqG...el_video_title

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,121

    Default Re: Doing a fall cutout tomorrow...thoughts in what to do with them?

    If you have combs of honey and some empty combs, you might be able to get them set up with some honey on the sides, empty comb in the middle and maybe (if you have enough) more honey above. Old dark comb you might be able to cut and tie in frames, but, most honey comb is too fragile for that. But you might push it a bit considering they need all the help they can get. Some dry sugar on top might be some help.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesferal.htm#removal
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfeeding.htm#drysugar
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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