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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Anniston Alabama
    Posts
    37

    Default Hauled my first bees

    A lot of you commented on a previous post that I started about getting bees from another person across the state. Yesterday afternoon, I drove four hours, met my friend and her family, and started working on loading up those bees. When I talked to the man that owned them, he said he got them in 98 and hasn't done anything with them since. He had a beesuit, and figuring that this could be interesting, I put it on. I smoked the hive but as soon as I popped the top of the hive the bees literally exploded out. I immediately got stung on my hand where some found access into my gloves. I retreated and figured I would just load them up. Turns out the other two "empty" hives the man said I could take were loaded up with bees as well. They were so aggressive, I told my friend to just sit in her truck until I loaded them up. I ended up getting seven stings with the last one hiding out in my truck cab and taking my shoulder about two hours into my drive home. If any of you got these bees, what would you do with them? The bees that I used to have were very docile and laid back, but these guys are angry. Should I just keep them and requeen next spring? The hives are two deeps and all of them except for the last one are full of honey. There was no brood which I could see, but the hives is super crowded, so I guess they are just honey bound. Burr comb is everywhere, and I know it will take a long time to get those frames out.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Stevenson, Washington, USA
    Posts
    181

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    I would wait for some local keepers to sound off, but it could just be a timing thing - this time if year, and this year especially, all if my normally docile hives have been super defensive. I don't know anything about AHB, or if you have much of a "winter", but mine are full of honey, grumpy, and tucked in for the winter!

    Congrats again on the great find of three hives! Even if you have to requeen, that's a great startup!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Anniston Alabama
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Just talked to a local beekeeper that has a lot of experience in this area. The nectar flow is coming to an end. Maybe that has something to do with it. I'm glad I found these hives, I've missed having bees.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Belpre,Ohio, USA
    Posts
    1,249

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Smarsh, I am glad to hear that you made it back ok, if it were me I would leave the hives alone, the bees are settled in for winter so it would probably be best to leave be till spring. You might even see the aggressiveness diminish when spring rolls around, if not I would requeen at that time. I am happy for you that you are back in the bee business.
    Bill...in Southeast Ohio

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Neodesha, Ks
    Posts
    617

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Ditto on the good wishes on getting the 3 hives given to you. Were they in AHB territory where you picked them up? If they were you might want to watch them caustically and like others have said, requeen them in the spring. just my $0.02 worth, worth just what it cost you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Whitmell, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    95

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Quote Originally Posted by Smarsh7903 View Post
    If any of you got these bees, what would you do with them?
    I would sit them out in a remote place somewhere. Then next spring split them into as many five framers as possible and get some queens from somewhere. Smaller colonies are ever so slightly nicer than big ones so should dilute the evil a bit until they go extinct.

    I would hate the thought of bringing drones from something that mean into my area. Yet there's a couple guys across the hill from me with bees that will eat you for breakfast.
    Don't laugh it's paid for. -- Manure draws more flies than honey.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Livermore, CA
    Posts
    1,373

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Good to hear that nothing fell apart on you and your alive!! If they have been living in those hives without any help or manipulation since 1998, you have some awesome survivor stock!! I would do what Ralph said and split the heck out of them in the spring to get as many survivor queens as you can!! Goodluck and look forward to a spring report!!
    Coyote Creek Bees

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    8,976

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Wasn't he suggesting requeening?
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,702

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Quote Originally Posted by Smarsh7903 View Post
    as soon as I popped the top of the hive the bees literally exploded out.
    Aren't you the guy that was going to try this with no smoker, no tools, no veil?

    LOL!
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Livermore, CA
    Posts
    1,373

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    Wasn't he suggesting requeening?
    Maybe, but I was running with the idea of splitting them as many ways as possible and let them make their own queens.
    Coyote Creek Bees

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Myrtle Beach, SC, USA
    Posts
    874

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Im with beeghost, dont do anything now, let them sit for the winter and see how they are in the spring. If you want to try treatment free, those are some good bees to start off with. If not, I wish I had those queens.
    https://www.facebook.com/stevesbees99
    Please visit my page, Thanks

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Whitmell, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    95

    Default Re: Hauled my first bees

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    Wasn't he suggesting requeening?
    Yes. "Get some queens from somewhere." I wouldn't want them within 30 miles of my place personally. If I had a choice.

    Yet if i were stuck with them I'd split them as many ways as possible. Tear down any attempt by them to make queen cells and give them nice queens from somewhere.

    Survivor stock doesn't mean evil stock. There's some survivor bees across the hill from me that haven't been mated with anything foreign in decades. You could stick your hand in the hive entrance and have nothing to worry about. I was cutting out a swarm from off them and got inbetween a piece of metal siding and the brood nest with my face and upper body inches from the exposed combs. Nothing. The only time they got defensive was when i was cutting the combs out.

    I've yet to receive a sting from those bees while they've been in my yard since July. I've been in them almost daily with no suit/veil/gloves.
    Don't laugh it's paid for. -- Manure draws more flies than honey.

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