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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Garland County, AR
    Posts
    1,076

    Default Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    Fires are starting to crop up all around due to the severe drought. Instead of lighting up the smoker, I used a mister full of sugar water to do a quick inspection of a small hive. I have also used plain water for a quickie. Are there any other tips for inspecting bigger hives using alternatives to smoke (rather than nothing at all)? Does water work effectively when it's a large hive? Or an aggressive hive?
    Zone 7b ~ Central Arkansas
    8fr medium equipment

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Augusta County, VA, USA
    Posts
    73

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    Liquid smoke. Haven't used it personally but i know I've seen it on vendor's websites.

    Good point - I also worry about fire when it's really dry as I am surrounded by heavy forest and a fire would be devastating.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Spicewood, Texas, USA
    Posts
    232

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    We always used a product called Liquid Smoke to marinate steaks. Is that the same thing???!!!
    We were evacuated in the wildfires a year ago, and there is NO WAY I am ever using a smoker on the hives.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Augusta County, VA, USA
    Posts
    73

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    Dunno. And I've never used it, so just saying it's available and might be of interest. Here's one listing:
    http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com...oductinfo/470/

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Garland County, AR
    Posts
    1,076

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    Liquid smoke, hmmm. Will have to look that up. Yeah, we r smack dab in the middle of 40 acres. I keep the area around my house watered - thank God for a deep well! But a fire was started the other day from a guy brush hogging. I guess he hit a rock and it sparked and that was all she wrote. Pretty scary. Thanks for the input.
    Zone 7b ~ Central Arkansas
    8fr medium equipment

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Garland County, AR
    Posts
    1,076

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    Srb, that must have been quite terrifying! I'm glad your house survived.

    Thanks for the link, abejorro. Says "edible by humans" - must be the same thing, I'm thinking! I keep a supply of that for my steak marinade. Whoda thunk!
    Zone 7b ~ Central Arkansas
    8fr medium equipment

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,716

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    For those concerned about burning down the place with a conventional smoker. The housing attached to the can includes a rechargeable battery to power the heating element.


    The Bee-Z-Smoker smolders the wood shavings using a patented heat element contained in the smoker can. This produces great amounts of smoke without the heat buildup of a conventional smoker that uses fire to generate smoke. The near-silent blower fan located in the handle, pushes the “Cool Bee Smoke” out of the can spout.
    http://beezsmoker.com/
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Madison, VA, USA
    Posts
    42

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    I remember reading that spraying sugar syrup was bad for bees when it was hot and dry. Something about it drying to them too fast. I think it is on Michael Bush's website. Not saying you should take it as gospel, but it is something to consider.
    See my progress at http://bpapiaries.blogspot.com!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Posts
    138

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    Liquid smoke is exactly what it says. Wood is burned in a distiller with a small bit of water and as the smoke cools in the coil, it attaches to the water that is condensing.

    Excellent stuff to add to baked beans and cole slaw!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Belpre,Ohio, USA
    Posts
    1,367

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    Just for curiosity I went into one of my big hives with just a water sprayer and it only ticked them off, I wouldn't recommend it, probably a mix of light syrup would be best. Personally I use a smoker but only use it lightly as it has it's advantages, I think that it would be impossible to move the bees off of the top of the frames so I can set a feeder in place with just a syrup water spray...Bill

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    1,238

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    HBH claims that with some bees you can use it instead of smoke.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Chickamauga, Walker County, Georgia
    Posts
    392

    Default Re: Extreme fire danger - water instead of smoke hive

    We have found that peppermint oil in water has given perfectly satisfactory results in lieu of smoke. A light misting "distracts" them very effectively ... they think it's raining, I think ... but does them no harm.

    (But do we have a smoker? You bet!!) Peppermint masks the alarm pheromone if you do get a sting, and once you get the stinger out it seems to soothe the sting, too.

    We've never added sugar to the mix. I'm not keen to the idea of weighing them down with sticky sugar, and don't really see the need for it. (Sure, they might say, "looky! food!!", but ....)

    If you do prefer to use a smoker, even under conditions of "extreme fire danger," simply use ordinary caution. In the very unlikely event that the smoker causes a ground-fire, stomp it out with your boot. I've never known it to happen.

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