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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Woodlawn, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    327

    Default A question about bee orientation

    The hypothetical question: Do bees orient more about North-South, arrangement of landmarks, or left-right?

    The real life situation: I had a group of eight nucs that I needed to move about 50 yards while rotating about 180 degrees. I had a few choices. 1)Keep them in the same order, left to right. This choice would place the southern box in the northern position, and so forth. 2)I could move the nucs directly across the space, which would reverse the order, but keep the northern one the furthest north, and so forth. 3)About the arrangement of landmarks, I tried to keep the things around the nucs in the same relationship to them so that the bees would have as many visual cues as possible to prevent drifting.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,834

    Default Re: A question about bee orientation

    Here's what I would do, wait to move them until you are going to get at least a couple days of non-flying weather(rain, cold)screen the entrances and move them to the new location, keep them in the same order. Keep the entrances screened during the bad weather and then after a couple days go out early in morning and remove screens and lean some boards or branches up against every other hive front. After a couple days take off the boards,etc. and you will have no problem with drifting or flying back to old location. Always works for me. John

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Wilmington, Illinois, USA
    Posts
    875

    Default Re: A question about bee orientation

    Turns out that I'll have to move my hives in the Spring time in the same fashion. They've likely adapted to where the path of the sun is, southward. Not sure they totally rely on sight. Thinking it's pheromones from their queen.
    Honey is the best thing ever discovered ! www.greenanything.net/honey-bees.php

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,325

    Default Re: A question about bee orientation

    I like that idea of, "wait for a period of non-flying, inclement weather". I seriously wish that were an option for me, here. But in these parts, that may take waiting a year or more. After relocating to our present location, we waited three years before any of our seasonal rains fell closer than a few miles away.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Wilmington, Illinois, USA
    Posts
    875

    Default Re: A question about bee orientation

    Joseph,
    Is it possible to simulate rain with a cloudy day and garden sprinkler? Think that might fool them?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,325

    Default Re: A question about bee orientation

    Anything is possible -- they do it for television and the movies, I'm not sure it would fool the bees though. Fortunately I rarely need to move any, the way I manage them. However, I do have a small trailer, I have been thinking of setting it up to haul a dozen or so colonies around my state, to see how they do in various locations.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Hartford, CT
    Posts
    607

    Default Re: A question about bee orientation

    Bees likely would also wanna feel the barometric pressure associated with a rain storm. Rather then boards you can use grass clipping or leaves.

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