Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Whatcom, Washington, USA
    Posts
    146

    Default keeping bees alive in a jar

    I sometimes keep a few bees in a glass jar for bee therapy at home. Made breathing holes in the lid, keep it in a dark cupboard, put some honey on the bottom covered with a thin paper tissue to keep the bees from sticking to it. I am having a hard time keeping bees alive and well for more than a few days. Seems like I have a hard time finding a good way of not under/over feeding and watering. Any suggestions?
    Thanks so much
    Serge

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Concrete, WA, USA
    Posts
    761

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    with bees - it takes a lot to get a few bees alive and the lot comes in the form of bees !!!!!!
    it takes about 1000 bees to keep one bee alive - they need each other in order to survive -
    remember that a hive is not only a bunch of bees its an animal in of its self.
    so trying to keep a few bees alive for a week or more in a jar is just really not enough to survive

    hope this helps
    Doing the Right things Right
    http://thevalleysbuzz.webs.com/

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Whatcom, Washington, USA
    Posts
    146

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    I keep them in the kitchen cupboard, so they have ok temperature to survive. I am curious how people that store bees in containers for apitherapy do it? I remember reading somewhere that if properly taken care of, they should survive fine for a couple of weeks.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Oak Ridge, NC, USA
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    Find someone who received a package of bees and get them to give it to you to keep your bees in and also when you feed them honey make sure they have water also. A cricket basket you find at the fish store also works as well.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Fort Myers, Florida, USA
    Posts
    203

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    A beekeeper friend of mine came up with a good solution for this very issue. I gave him a few cigar boxes (hubby's business) of particular dimensions, and he screened the sides. In the lid, he drilled holes and screened the holes for baby food jars, which make for a waterer and feeder.
    I started out as an opportunistic beekeeper. Now the bees keep me...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,308

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    Anyone ever see Charles Mraz's method? I'll see if I can describe it. It was a long time ago when I saw it.

    Quart canning jar with several air holes in cover.
    Blob of honey in bottom of jar with wad of tissue on top...the tissue may have been slightly damp, but not wet.
    Toilet paper roll standing on tissue...two triangular cut outs on bottom end of tube...opposite sides.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Farmington, North Carolina
    Posts
    255

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    Anyone ever see Charles Mraz's method?...
    Absolutely, Michael - tried and true. That's the way we do it.
    Susan

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    645

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    What is a good air temp as they don't have a laarge enough number of bees to regulate temp?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,802

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    I would shoot for >50 and <75 F
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Whatcom, Washington, USA
    Posts
    146

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    Quote Originally Posted by Gregory and Susan Fariss View Post
    Absolutely, Michael - tried and true. That's the way we do it.
    Susan
    Thanks every one for the good advise.
    Susan,
    How long can you make the bees last using this method? Any need for adding a little water every so often?
    Thanks so much
    Serge

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    645

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    Absolutely need to water and feed them. If nothing else lightly spray them twice/three times a day with 1:1 sugar water from a garden spray bottle.

    A dab of honey in a botle cap and then covered with tissue/toilet paper works well. Without it the bees will get stuck in the honey.

    Bees will drown in open water so if you place a supply in the quart jar, you will need to use aquarium rock or small rocks, or styrofoam chunks, or piece of nylon rope etc so they don't get submerged.

    Have ordered queens and have them arrive and weather gets cold and rainy and didn't want to open the hives. So have kept the queen and 6 nurse bees in screened wooden box for 5 days on the kitchen table

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,802

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    IMO, the easiest is to put candy (sugar and water only) or crystallized honey in the jar in some small container (a bottle cap or some kind perhaps) so they don't get all sticky. Put a #8 hardware cloth insert in a canning jar lid for the top. Give them a few drops of water on the screen once a day. You can keep them like this for a few weeks, but they will start smelling a bit and eventually will get stressed from no cleansing flights.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Outagamie County, Wisconsin USA
    Posts
    884

    Default Re: keeping bees alive in a jar

    We keep our bees in a glass jar with holes in the one-piece lid. (It was a pickle jar that holds 4 cups of water. It is 6-1/4 inches high by about 3-3/4 inches wide. We used two so that if we got a new shipment we put the bees in a new jar while we were still using older bees in the other one.) The bees last two weeks at the latest.

    We use a piece of screen with a slit in it so we can insert the locking tweezers in to retrieve a bee and still keep the other bees inside. The screen is held in place by rubber bands around the top of the jar. Then the jar lid with holes is screwed on.

    We cut a coffee filter in half and place it flat in the bottom of the jar and wet it slightly. It doesn't need much water. Add two sugar cubes to feed them. Honey gets sticky and messy. The cubes soak up a little water from the filter. There has to be something in the bottom of the jar for the bees to hang out on. We just kept the box that the bees were delivered in in there. Some people use toilet paper rolls or maybe a piece of wood.

    When our bees came, we removed the staples from the bee container and placed it in the jar (with wet filter and sugar cubes already in it), placed the screen piece loosely on top and used the tweezers to slide the bee container's cover off and remove it. All the while keeping the screen somewhat in place with the other hand. Place the rubberbands and then screw on the lid. Add new sugar cubes daily, every other day or as needed and moisten them with a drop or two of water via wetting the filter. Don't add too much water! No need to remove the screen until the jar is empty of bees.

    It's easy to pick the bees with tweezers when they crawl to the top of the roll or wooden box they came in. We got about 90 bees in one shipment (box) so that's what we kept in a jar at one time.

    I recommend people practicing BVT to chart their stinging.... date, total number of stings, number of stings that session, location of stings making sure to differentiate right or left areas for sides of the body, arms, legs, etc.

    Ice an area first and do a test partial sting to check for allergy first. If no allergy, proceed.
    Ice the area first before you sting it. It usually does make a big difference. Don't sting on an empty stomach. Avoid alcohol for the period between 24 hours before and 24 hours after stinging.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads