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Thread: Smoker?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Woodland, ca USA
    Posts
    8

    Default Smoker?

    Hi,
    I just started a TBH 3days ago. I made a couple mistakes...forgot to remove the cap from queen cage for 2 days, and then when i fixed that problem i let a comb fall off. This was at noon. The bees got pretty testy when i uncapped the queen, but that is mostly because i spent a while trying to fix the comb that unattached.
    Several hours later i went back into the hive at the end of the day to retrieve the comb that was now at the bottom of the hive. Again they got pretty testy about taking that comb out. This time a few followed me away from the hive and kept trying to let me know how bugged they were at me.
    I need to go in a third time to move the queen cage from the bars to the bottom of the hive. I don't want them to make more comb around the cage and then i break more comb when i remove the cage.
    My question is, should i be smoking them? I haven't yet. I didn't buy one because i read i didn't necessarily need one...or should i just leave them alone for a few days and not worry about hurting combs when i remove the queen cage in a couple days...opinions?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Casey, Il, USA
    Posts
    1,186

    Default Re: Smoker?

    get a smoker! It's one of those things you may never need, but when you do it's to late to light. I found that out the hard way! As your colony grows, the will get more defensive! Again....found that out the hard way LOL

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Woodland, ca USA
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Smoker?

    Thanks!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Josephine County,Oregon,USA
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    143

    Default Re: Smoker?

    You can always spray them with sugar water if it's over 65 degrees outside (until your smoker is in hand). I'm new and it's worked great keeping them down,for me,(for install and removing queen cage). I DO have a smoker though that I expect to use later when my hive is full!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Charles Town, WV
    Posts
    306

    Default Re: Smoker?

    Or you could just release her and take the cage out. They've had plenty of time to accept her. Better to have a smoker lit and idling nearby and not need it, than to not have one when you really need it. Besides... getting the dang thing lit and keeping it lit is part of the fun, even if you don't use it. (smell the sarcsasm? ;-) )
    - Bruce
    I have one TBH and have yet to overwinter it. Don't do anything soley on my advice!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,711

    Default Re: Smoker?

    Welcome to Beesource!

    > I need to go in a third time to move the queen cage from the bars to the bottom of the hive.

    At this point, I agree that it is likely the bees are accustomed to the queen. Here is Michael Bush's comments about releasing a queen:

    If you're afraid of the queen flying, then pull the cork from the non candy end (where she can get out now) and, while holding your thumb over the hole, lay the cage on the bottom and leave it. Put the frames back in and the lid on and walk away.One of the issues seems to be that people think that either they will abscond or they will kill the queen. In my experience leaving her caged does not seem to resolve these issues. If they want to leave they usually move to the hive next door anyway and abandon the queen. If you release the queen it also won't stop this from happening, but it also won't cause it. I've not had a problem with a package killing the queen. A bunch of confused bees have been shaken together from many hives and in the confusion they are just happy to find a queen. If they do kill the queen it is almost always because there is already one loose in the package that got shaken in. The bees prefer this queen because they have contact with her.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beespackage...thangqueencage

    And I agree that a smoker is an essential tool for beekeeping, whether in a TBH or Lang style hive.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Woodland, ca USA
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    8

    Default Re: Smoker?

    Thanks ! Very helpful. I may try the sugar water first and then the smoker...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Charles Town, WV
    Posts
    306

    Default Re: Smoker?

    just a plain water mist works, too (to a degree) and doesn't make everything sticky and attract ants and other pests. I've calmed down groups of angy veil-butting guard bees with a vigorous misting of just water many times. I have heard that positioning a smoker upwind such that the smoke wafts across the hive can keep them calm(er). I've done this, and it seems to be true, but can't say that it is considered a good practice...maybe it makes too much smoke.
    - Bruce
    I have one TBH and have yet to overwinter it. Don't do anything soley on my advice!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Woodland, ca USA
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    8

    Default Re: Smoker?

    Thanks, yeah, the sugar water seems to stop up my sprayer too. Found that out when i installed them...so just used water. I live right down the road from a bee supplies place, so im going to get a smoker, but try water too.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    321

    Default Re: Smoker?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ejack View Post
    Thanks, yeah, the sugar water seems to stop up my sprayer too. Found that out when i installed them...so just used water. I live right down the road from a bee supplies place, so im going to get a smoker, but try water too.
    If the sugar water is too thick (too much sugar) you won't be able to spray. I can't spray 2:1 or 5:3 (what I use) through regular spray bottles. Water down the syrup and you'll be able to spray it.

    Cheers,
    Tony P.
    There must be a harder way to do that... let me find it for you.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Boston, MA
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    Default Re: Smoker?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ejack View Post
    I need to go in a third time to move the queen cage from the bars to the bottom of the hive. I don't want them to make more comb around the cage and then i break more comb when i remove the cage.
    1. Leave the bees alone. You're bothering them too much.

    2. NEVER put the queen cage on the bottom of the hive. The bottom of the hive is where dead things drop and trash goes.

    Good luck,
    Tony P.
    There must be a harder way to do that... let me find it for you.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Cache co, Utah, USA
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    12

    Default Re: Smoker?

    Don't listen to anyone who's answered so far. It's IMPERATIVE that you do thus: Carefully load the entire hive in the back of your truck. Drive to Logan, Utah, where your hive needs to spend the next 10 years at mountain elevation to recover from your mistakes thus far. For a nominal fee I will keep an eye on your hive for you, and after 10 years, if they haven't fully recovered, I will watch over them for an additional 10 years, at which time you can return to recover your hive. Sound okie-dokie to you?

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Woodland, ca USA
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    8

    Default Re: Smoker?

    Quote Originally Posted by Liberty Nut View Post
    Don't listen to anyone who's answered so far. It's IMPERATIVE that you do thus: Carefully load the entire hive in the back of your truck. Drive to Logan, Utah, where your hive needs to spend the next 10 years at mountain elevation to recover from your mistakes thus far. For a nominal fee I will keep an eye on your hive for you, and after 10 years, if they haven't fully recovered, I will watch over them for an additional 10 years, at which time you can return to recover your hive. Sound okie-dokie to you?
    Awesome, yeah, okay. Thanks. lol!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Isle of Wight, VA
    Posts
    618

    Default Re: Smoker?

    So far, I'm not using a smoker. Misting them with water bottle with a couple drops is Anise oil. It disguises the alarm pheromones. I will probably have to get a smoker by next spring.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    longton, kansas USA
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    606

    Default Re: Smoker?

    [QUOTE=Rader Sidetrack;928640]
    And I agree that a smoker is an essential tool for beekeeping, whether in a TBH or Lang style hive.
    [/COLOR][/QUOTE

    always have a smoker ready when working the bees ! i would choose a smoker over a suit and veile in most case had i only had one choice. even indigenous people use smoke for robbing wild honey ... no suit,no spray bottles. smoke is harmless and it accomplishes what is needed. sets the colony into 'get food there is a fire' frame of mind as well as masking the attack,aggressive and communication pheromones in them.... again.... it is harmless to them.

    Do they have lungs ?

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Midlothian, Texas
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    23

    Default Re: Smoker?

    Cute!

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