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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cambridge, MD, USA
    Posts
    110

    Default Plan of attack...

    Okay, I will have 4 deeps ready by the weekend and no bees as of yet (I know I'm behind schedule), however, I'd like to go over my "plan of attack" an see if all seems well. I plan to spray down the foundations with some 1:1 sugar solution with 1 Tbsp. of homemade HBH solution/gallon to encourage the bees to take to the frames (wax coated plasticell).

    It seems that removing 4-5 frames to fit the package box in the deep is the least stress method, so that's how I plan on 'releasing' them into the hive. I was planning on setting up each hive about 30' apart for now to minimize packages from combining, then after the queens are released (2-3 days I think) and the hives look like they are acclimating well to their new environments, say a week after, move them closer together onto their permanent setting.

    The permanent setting was/is to be some 44 stands with an old aluminum ladder between them, about 16-18" off the ground. The should be strong enough to hold them, but I can go to 44's if need be.

    The location I chose is on the south side of an agricultural pond. The pond floods with salt water from one side and fresh water from the other, has good north/northwest protection via some 12-15' pines and bushes and is fully open to 88 acres of fields on the south side.

    I was going to feed for a month or so, until the soybeans start to bloom, then let them do the rest. I wasn't going to feed again unless it looked like they were not going to have enough for winter.

    Any suggestions/modifications are welcome.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Gaston, SC
    Posts
    266

    Default Re: Plan of attack...

    I have always been told,, if you move a hive make it a SIGNIFICANT move,, or the field bees will be disoriented and not find the new home,, OR move it about 6 inches a day,, so if you are going to put them 30 feet apart,, plan on a good way to get them back together,.,,,

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK USA
    Posts
    2,869

    Default Re: Plan of attack...

    On the stand, not sure what the side load rating on the ladder is but in a good year each hive can get in excess of 200 pounds X 4. I would hate for you to come out one day to find your hives in a heap on the ground. Be sure to use the branch method for moving them such a short distance so they know to reorient. Everything else sound OK to me.
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Eldersburg, MD, USA
    Posts
    178

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Winhall, VT
    Posts
    1,066

    Default Re: Plan of attack...

    Put the hives where they will be in the long term and install the packages. They will figure it out.
    Raising Vermont Bees one mistake at a time.
    USDA Zone 5A

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    woodbine, MD, USA
    Posts
    67

    Default Re: Plan of attack...

    If I read your post correctlly, you plan is to put the package box into the deep and leave it there for a couple days and then remove the box from the deep? If I read this right, you might want to re consider this. I've only hived 2 pacakges by dumping the bees in and pushing the queen cage up against one of the frames and having all 10 frames in the deep at the time of installation. And even that way, within a couple days, they had built some crazy extra-wide comb around the queen cage that I had to carve out since it didn't fit once I removed the queen cage and tried to get the frames all back to normal spacing. if you have the package box in the deep, not sure what they'd do with that.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    3,966

    Default Re: Plan of attack...

    You are overthinking this in an almost acebirdian manner. Put the hive where it is going to be. Pull frames from the middle of the bottom box and shake the bees in like they were a can of beans. Gently replace the frames giving the bees ample time to clear out of the way. Put the queen cagejust below the top bars of two frames in the middle with the screen exposed so the bees can meet the queen and don't forget to remove any tape covering the candy plug. Leaving the frames apart will only result in messed up combs. Only put them in one deep, not all four. Tall hive stands are great for working singles but if you plan on producing a crop some day. just off the ground is better. Use the 4x4's Keep it simple at all times.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    roswell, georgia, USA
    Posts
    720

    Default Re: Plan of attack...

    I agree with vance, other than the into method. Go ahead and remove the necessary frames to fit the package into the middles of the box, remove the queen cage and attach it to one of the fames near the center, go back in a 3 - 4 days to see if the queen has been released (look for her now on the frames to be sure she is there, easier than later), or release her, pull the package box and add the remaining frames to the hive, shake out the bees lingering in the package, then leave them alone or a good week or more.

    Give them something to feed on, depending on your method, reduce the entrance to the minimum.

    They are not going to drift because they are tuned in to the queen, so don't worry about placement or proximity.

    Then cross your fingers for a good flow
    EAS Georgia Certified. "Tradition - Even if you have done it the same way for years doesn't mean that it is not stupid."

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cambridge, MD, USA
    Posts
    110

    Default Re: Plan of attack...

    Wow, thanks for all the replies!

    Glad I posed the question here.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Birmingham, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    101

    Default Re: Plan of attack...

    If it is any help, when I got my nuc's, I placed them about 6 feet apart, but the entrances are facing different directions. One is facing south and the other is facing southeast.

    Because my wife insisted that any hives taking up real estate in her garden had to be "pretty". So I bought four quarts paint in different pastel colors that she chose: yellow, green, blue, purple. She also didn't want the two hives to be identical, so i mixed things up a bit so one of the deep brood boxes is yellow and the other is green. Had it been up to me, they probably would have been whatever color of "oops" paint I could get cheap and definitely would not have the fancy decorative copper covers. But keeping my wife happy about beekeeping going on in her garden is essential to ensuring that the hives stay in the back yard.

    After painting them like this, I later read that having different colored hives can assist the foraging bees in returning to the correct hive.

    pX6hh.jpg

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Lander, WY
    Posts
    261

    Default Re: Plan of attack...

    "acebirdian" got to love it!

    I face them the same direction, toward the rising sun, hives are all within 3 feet of each other, nucs, swarms and packages, they all do fine. Only dif is I anchor them with drawn comb and honey/nectar, perhaps spray 1:1 on a frame as an anchor.

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