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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Crestview, Florida
    Posts
    82

    Default Gentle Bees...what kind to get???

    I started out with Italians from Georgia and they were ok, then I bought a couple of Minnesota Hygenic queens from Louisiana, but they seem to try to get in my veil with me everytime I open their hive.. I have had as many as 6 hives, now I'm down to 2 and I want to increase. What are your preferrences for choice of bee types??

    I'm planning on setting out some bait hives and see if that works for me, but in the short term I'm looking into buying some queens to rid myself of the fighters I have.

    Thanks for your help,
    Andy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Spanish Fork, UT, USA
    Posts
    388

    Default Re: Gentle Bees...what kind to get???

    I have always used Italians and Carniolans. Both have worked great for me. Historically light Italians have been known to be gentle bees, but it often comes down to the hive. Some hives are just more aggressive than others.
    Last edited by Jon B; 01-24-2014 at 05:52 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Baytown, TX., USA.
    Posts
    651

    Default Re: Gentle Bees...what kind to get???

    Hot breed; Queenless, hungry, predated, sunless day bees, with brood,un-smoked,wet, robbed, rocked (kids), manipulated by amateur (me), etc and etc.
    Calm breed; Well fed, sunny, healthy, Queenright,smoked, not predated,dry, owned by experienced beek, etc and etc.

    I am trying to bee funny.

    I have one hive I captured from a tall Oak tree, they had lived there 9 months, had a complete nest. On any given day they are nice bees, they often come to meet me and later walk me home. Mostly they behave if the weather is nice and my smoker works. Just don't mess around, drop things, pop the top to loudly. Nice and calm begets nice and calm.

    Off topic a bit. I carry a sheet of plexiglas and slide it under my flat top and inner cover. Then I remove the top and inner cover. No heat loss when cold, no bees in the face, can check sugar brick and somewhat comb honey, can get some visual info about hive condition. If all is well I reverse the action and never disturb (almost) the nest and heat balance. If needed I smoke under it, watch for girls to settle then proceed.
    Julysun elevation 23 feet. 4 Hives, 2 years.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Clarksville, TN
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: Gentle Bees...what kind to get???

    I've come to the point that the temperment of my bees is a minor consideration. I'll take some attitude on their part if it means that they are more defensive about pests and good producers!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,242

    Default Re: Gentle Bees...what kind to get???

    Andy, I gave up on MH bees and use Carniolans. They are gentle.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ankeny, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    598

    Default Re: Gentle Bees...what kind to get???

    I have Carniolans and Italians. When our State Inspector was out last Summer, he thought they were aggressive, but they are the only seven hives I've ever known, and to me they are just fine. I always wear a full suit anyway, because I am allergic to bee stings. Get some bees and treat them we'll......you will be fine.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    carney, maryland, USA
    Posts
    603

    Default Re: Gentle Bees...what kind to get???

    Quote Originally Posted by julysun View Post
    Hot breed; Queenless, hungry, predated, sunless day bees, with brood,un-smoked,wet, robbed, rocked (kids), manipulated by amateur (me), etc and etc.
    Calm breed; Well fed, sunny, healthy, Queenright,smoked, not predated,dry, owned by experienced beek, etc and etc.

    I am trying to bee funny.

    I have one hive I captured from a tall Oak tree, they had lived there 9 months, had a complete nest. On any given day they are nice bees, they often come to meet me and later walk me home. Mostly they behave if the weather is nice and my smoker works. Just don't mess around, drop things, pop the top to loudly. Nice and calm begets nice and calm.

    Off topic a bit. I carry a sheet of plexiglas and slide it under my flat top and inner cover. Then I remove the top and inner cover. No heat loss when cold, no bees in the face, can check sugar brick and somewhat comb honey, can get some visual info about hive condition. If all is well I reverse the action and never disturb (almost) the nest and heat balance. If needed I smoke under it, watch for girls to settle then proceed.
    While being funny, there is a kernel of truth to july sun's list of Hot Breed and Calm Breed. Also in the warm months (there ARE warm months, aren't there?) time of day when you go in can make a big difference. Mid-morning a colony can be real calm, late afternoon they can be nasty, particularly in a dearth. I have Italians, and had Russians in the past. I did not notice a difference in temperament, but I preferred the industry of the Italians.

    Phil

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