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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Nova Scotia Canada
    Posts
    13

    Default burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    ok so I am a new beek , and I was reading an old provincial beekeeping guide from the 80s , and there is a paragraph in the section on handeling bees where is sats if you have a very agressive or "HOT" hive you can put a teaspoon on amonium nitrate ( fertalizer) in you smoker and the smoke will stun the bees and incapacitate them . it does say you need to be careful not to over do it but I am wondering is this a real thing ? I have been researching how to keep bees for a couple months now getting ready for my first nuke this spring and I have never seen this mentioned any where else .

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Carroll County, Georgia, USA
    Posts
    217

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    I don't know how safe that would be for the bees, but it is just my opinion. I have little experience, but I have read that replacing a hot hive's queen is the way to go.
    Natural Beekeeping Information at
    http://georgefamilycrafts.com/

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Nova Scotia Canada
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    here is what it says exactly :
    "the use of nitrus oxide ( Laughing Gas ) . light the smoker in the usual way . next place a teaspoonful of ammonium nitrate fertilizer in the smoker and on top of iit a small amount of grass to keep pellets from blowing out when you work bellows. the chemical will ignite upon contacting the fire and will develop brownish white fumes.

    open the hive the usual way and lightly smoke the bees over the frames. the whole colony can be put to sleep by using plenty of fumes( It will recover in 20 minuites or so ) . Use moderation since an excess of the fumes is harmfull to the bees . by using the fumes sparingly bees can be made grogy; the bees will just stand around and quiver, unable to put up a fight . "

    that is all it says in the whole book , and i have not seen it mentioned anywhere else . the book is Nova Scotia Beekeeping and looks to be published in the late 70s , ( I thought it was the 80s but there are notes from the previous owner with late 70s dates . it is a government publication .

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    29,466

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    I'd be concerned about the effects on the beekeeper.

    I have never heard of this technique. This is something you aught not plan on needing.
    "Most of my exercise comes from wrestling with pigs and beating dead horses."
    Mark Berninghausen



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    lafargeville ny usa
    Posts
    1,222

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    seems like I heard this somewhere a couple of times. ammonium nitrate may not be easy to buy now, mixed with diesel it is an explosive. do not try any other chemical fertilizer. 40 years ago I trucked the stuff, as an airport runway de-icer.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Posts
    69

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    Quote Originally Posted by NSBee View Post
    I have never seen this mentioned any where else .
    I'm betting that there's a very good reason for that!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Isle of Wight, VA
    Posts
    755

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    Isn't granulated fertilizer what MacGyver used to create a bomb on one of his episodes back in the '80's? Not sure I'd be wanting to mix ammonium nitrate and fire...and then hold it in my hand.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    lafargeville ny usa
    Posts
    1,222

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    actualy it is not that easy to get it to pop off.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    10,758

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    OK you have them stunned now what? Kill the queen and give them a new one or just finish them off?

    The problem I see with this method is if it is a very hot hive the ones that are going to get you already have before you open the hive to smoke them.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Algoma dr. Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    1,369

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    You guys are guaranteeing to get your name on a special government data base!

    That stuff is hard to get anymore as it is also one of the ingredients for some recreational drugs. Seems to be involved in a lot of fire calls.

    I would have a look at a halogen or CO2 fire extinguisher for electrical fires. CO2 is a good anaesthetic for bees. I think it is what is used during instrumental insemination of queens.
    Frank

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Spokane, Washington, USA
    Posts
    842

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    This info is nothing new. Ammonium nitrate has been used for knocking bees out in mating nucs and a virgin introduced. When the bees wake up they accept virgin more readily since the stuff appears to clear their memory. Also if your moving hives a short distance the bees wont remember old location. It is possible that it shortens life of bees.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Knox Co, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    916

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    Ammonium nitrate is a little harder to buy in quantities since the OK City bombing.

    I also understand it burns pretty hot. Maybe you could put some bees to sleep and clean the creosote out of your smoker at the same time!

    Tom

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Kirksville, Missouri USA
    Posts
    171

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    Quote Originally Posted by ruthiesbees View Post
    Isn't granulated fertilizer what MacGyver used to create a bomb on one of his episodes back in the '80's? Not sure I'd be wanting to mix ammonium nitrate and fire...and then hold it in my hand.
    He probably had to use the right duct tape to make it work right. Oh, no, that was Red Green.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Blythewood, SC
    Posts
    196

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    I'd be concerned about the effects on the beekeeper.
    I'm not sure it's healthy to breathe over the long term for the short term I'd be careful. This stuff is used to make smoke bombs and is also in cold packs you'd find in a drug store. I'd like to hear how it works on HOT bees. If you try it let us know what happens.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    high springs florida usa
    Posts
    123

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    IF I need fertalizer to look at my bees im going to use it to blow them up

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    5,220

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    The swarms I started with in the '70s were vicious and would boil out, they were unworkable. We re-queened them using ammonium nitrate: Here are my instructions:

    Ammonium nitrate - Get a few table spoons from a local wholesale nursery or farmer. Have a new caged queen, division screen and drone guard (entrance queen excluder) ready. Light the smoker, drop in a table spoon of ammonium nitrate, don't inhale the sm
    Ammonium nitrate - Get a few table spoons from a local wholesale nursery or farmer. Have a new caged queen, division screen and drone guard (entrance queen excluder) ready. Light the smoker, drop in a table spoon of ammonium nitrate, don't inhale the smoke as it will blast out of the smoker. Fumigate the hive with the blasting smoke. The bees will fall unconscious. Shake them onto a sheet in front of the hive. Place all the brood in the upper brood chamber. They will awake from their stupor and walk back into the hive, the queen being found on the entrance excluder. Divide the hive introducing the new queen above the division screen into the box containing the brood. These mean bees will kill the new queen if you try a direct introduction. The division screens sends the old mean bees back to the box down below, young bees above to accept the new queen. Either squish the old queen, or mark her and run her back into the bottom. You will then have to find her and squish her after the new queen up above is accepted, then merging the boxes.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Verde Valley, Arizona,United States
    Posts
    94

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    Sounds fun. Ill try it this spring. I only have aggressive bees. Now to only get some fertilizer.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Lottsburg, Virginia USA
    Posts
    268

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    you guys realize that the burning of ammonium nitrate creates nitrous oxide known as laughing gas so the bees and the beekeeper will all be singing Don't worry be happy.
    Johno

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Verde Valley, Arizona,United States
    Posts
    94

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    That would be really nice. Its better than cussing at the multiple stings.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Isle of Wight, VA
    Posts
    755

    Default Re: burning fertalizer insmoker to stunn agressive bees ?

    Quote Originally Posted by crofter View Post
    You guys are guaranteeing to get your name on a special government data base!
    And here I thought we got on that government database by posting on Facebook "I want to buy a Russian nuc, anybody know where I can get one?"

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