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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    West Fork, Arkansas, USA
    Posts
    11

    Default Bee behavior after a cut-out

    I just recently started keeping bees, so I am still learning their behavior. I'm in construction, so when I got chance to cut out some bees I jumped at the oppurtunity. Wow, what a nightmare! The house was an older house that had been remodeled twice. After cutting through two roofs, an exterior, and interior wall, I got my bees.
    The comb that I removed occupied a space roughly 28" x 40" x 6". I put most of their brood on frames and some of their honey. I have them in two 10 frame deep boxes. I put the rest of their honey in a bucket in front of their hive.
    My question is this... I caught them yesterday and put them in the boxes last night. This morning when I checked on them there were several bees congregating on the front of the box. Tonight I vacuumed up the remaining bees. When I returned to the hive there was even more bees on the front of the box. Do they have enough room? I have 20 hours invested in these bees and I don't want to lose them. Is this normal behavior?
    Sorry for the lengthy post, but I wanted to provide all the information. Thanks, Brad

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Gaithersburg, MD
    Posts
    363

    Default Re: Bee behavior after a cut-out

    Look closely at the bees at the entrance--are they fanning their wings? If so, are their abdomens pointing upwards and somewhat arched? My guess is they are either warm--so hanging out at the entrance--may be fanning to circulate air into the hive; or they are scenting in an attempt to let lost bees know where they are because they know they are in a new spot (if this then their abdomens will be pointed in the air while fanning).

    In the next day or so you will see lots of bees flying circles in front of, and around, the hive--orientation flights. After that things will get to normal (from the outside point of view anyway).

    Can't answer whether they have enough room or not--would have too see it. Others may be able to guess from the dimensions you gave but I'm relatively new at this myself.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Lyons, CO
    Posts
    3,046

    Default Re: Bee behavior after a cut-out

    Bees on the outside of a colony is pretty normal. Even a large #, for example bearding.
    Bees, brews and fun
    in Lyons, CO

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Louisville Kentucky USA
    Posts
    458

    Default Re: Bee behavior after a cut-out

    I would move the bucket of honey away from the hive entrance,its an open invitation for other bees to come rob them while they are weak.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Lakeland, FL USA
    Posts
    825

    Default Re: Bee behavior after a cut-out

    I did a cut-out recently (with my friend Robert) and the bees were taking a bunch or orientation flights the first day-or-three. They come out on the deck to hang out, also, in intervals. I've noticed that several of them will follow the ones flying real closely with their movements - almost is a guarding or studying like fashion.

    Another thing that I found interesting was the fact that they NOT care to take any honey. (they had no stores in their original young hive). All they are doing is bringing back food/pollen from the field. I do NOT have welfare-bees on my hand, lol.

    The ball that is hanging in my top bar hive has now begun showing the brand new comb emerging. It's beautiful.

    I had to throw away all the original comb because wax moth larvae had pretty-much overtaken it all. They are wax-moth free at this point and LOVING life !!!

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