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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
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    Fargo, North Dakota
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    Default How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    Have you?

    Like this one? https://youtu.be/hfOwArQHltk

    How likely is it that I'll encounter something like this?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Alachua County, FL, USA
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    9,541

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    I have -- in the Caribbean and Central America. Thunderstorms and solar eclipses were pretty rough also!
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    Liberty Hill, Texas
    Posts
    578

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    For 1 I think that is irresponsible bee keeping procedure. I have kept Africanized hybrid bees and aggressive bees my first year. It's pretty dumb not to smoke the bees as this guy clearly did not. He says he did, but at the end of the video where was the smoker? NONE. IT'S ALL FOR SHOW NOTHING MORE! A few puffs of smoke doesn't count for anything on an aggressive full strength bee hive. The difference between Africanized bees and non is that the defensive process is much more. Africanized bees will come out 30 to 50 yards prior to being approached directly. They need to be smoked heavily as in smoke em until you see it billowing out the top of the lid. That's about the only thing you can do to get any respect to them if they're going to calmed for any length of time. The main factor in knowing; isn't just the defensive guard bees when approaching, it's also when you close the hive up and depart. If you have don't know and want to pin point in fact you do and live in the southern states, a telling sign is close up the hive and depart. Either the bees stay at the bee hive or the bees will follow for a long distance and you just can't get them to leave you. When you walk a block up and back and you still have bees following trying to kill you, you have Africanized hybrid bees. Mean aggressive bees that are non Africanized will typically stay at the bee hive when you put the hive back together and the top lid on. Africanized bees come out to kill in mass!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Hamilton, Alabama
    Posts
    2,588

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    First and foremost, NEVER open a colony of bees without access to a lit smoker. You may not need it. They may be perfectly workable with no smoke at all. But that one time when you open a colony after a skunk has irritated them the night before and they explode in your face, you will be glad to have the smoker. Even with smoke, Africanized bees can be unworkable.

    If bees that sting 100 times or more per minute count as aggressive, then yes, I guess I've worked a few that were that hot.
    NW Alabama, 47 years, 22 colonies and growing, sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 14 frame square Dadant broodnest

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Yuba County, California, USA
    Posts
    5,800

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    Yes, I've had a hive or two that were like that, but they didn't stay like that for very long. The couple I've had sneaked up on me, but re-queening them took care of the problem.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Dutchtown,Louisiana,USA
    Posts
    348

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    I've got one that's gets pretty mad when the brood nest is opened up, they'll be getting a new queen. That's a little much, doubtful those would see daylight the next morning.

    One of the first pieces of advice I received, "mean bees can't stay"
    Last edited by dtrooster; 05-19-2017 at 02:31 AM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    8,324

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    "I don't think I'm going to be taking any of these bees for a mating nuc" (said at 5.20)
    "Thinking Inside The Box"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Nassau County, New York, USA
    Posts
    422

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    Never had a hive that mean. Don't know if smoke will make a difference. It is hard to requeen a hive if they have resources to make a queen on their own. Is there a hood attached to your jacket? You seem to be wearing a veil. Bees can crawl under it. Be very careful dealing with these monster bees
    USDA Zone 7a - elevation 148 feet

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    8,324

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    And I'd always been told that long hives are so much more docile and easy to work!
    "Thinking Inside The Box"

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Massillon, Ohio
    Posts
    5,135

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    Every new beekeeper who thinks that working bees without a veil is cool should watch this video. I've never had any bees quite this bad, but it does not take much imagination to figure out what would happen if you got into a hive like this without a veil. Even if their aggressive behavior was just a fraction of this (which I experienced at certain times of the year with my ordinarily docile hives), it would be a very painful lesson.
    To everything there is a season....

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Fargo, North Dakota
    Posts
    194

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    Will, not me in the vid. Thanks for your concern though.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Baltimore, Maryland
    Posts
    312

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    And I'd always been told that long hives are so much more docile and easy to work!
    Um, no. They can be just as mean as any other.
    Zone 7a. 14 horizontal hives, 6 nucs

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Seattle, WA, USA
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    Having watched a lot of his (Cody's) videos, he seems to have kept bees for a long time and is very comfortable around them, but I've never seen him smoke much other than an initial smoking. Not sure with a hive like this how much more smoking would really help...

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    8,324

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    What's his attitude to requeening?
    "Thinking Inside The Box"

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Hamilton, Alabama
    Posts
    2,588

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    Not sure with a hive like this how much more smoking would really help.
    Improper use of smoke will turn mild tempered colonies into aggressive colonies. Aggressive colonies with incorrect use of smoke will turn into blazing hot inferno colonies. I don't care who he is or how long he has kept bees or how hot the bees are, he does not use smoke properly. I worked a too hot to handle hive 3 years ago removing 2 mediums full of honey. Even with plenty of smoke, they did their best to light me up. They were not africanized, just a hotter than normal strong colony with a huge crop of honey during the midsummer dearth.
    NW Alabama, 47 years, 22 colonies and growing, sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 14 frame square Dadant broodnest

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    San Diego, California, USA
    Posts
    65

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    many things about this vid.. Im in SoCal and have worked much more aggressive.. but I noticed.. As a top bar hive they had access to the top.. when he opened the lid they were ontop of the top bars.. that's not how a top bar works.. they were probably either just mad at the situation or being robbed.. They may be afrianized but if I had to guess.. either the tbh was built by an idiot or just wasn't set up right..

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Seattle, WA, USA
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    What's his attitude to requeening?
    I believe in this case the hive was already queenless, could probably do for a nicer grne pool...

    Quote Originally Posted by Tortuga View Post
    many things about this vid.. Im in SoCal and have worked much more aggressive.. but I noticed.. As a top bar hive they had access to the top.. when he opened the lid they were ontop of the top bars.. that's not how a top bar works.. they were probably either just mad at the situation or being robbed.. They may be afrianized but if I had to guess.. either the tbh was built by an idiot or just wasn't set up right..
    It looked more like a horizontal lang than a TBH.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Ojai, California
    Posts
    2,290

    Default Re: How many of you have worked with Crazy aggressive colonies

    I started beekeeping after reading Doctor Charles Miller's book, Fifty Years Among the Bees. He said that his main criteria was honey, so he kept some very mean bees. I took his clue and went in thinking that this was a good approach. I've always had some really mean colonies that produced a LOT of honey. I also used to keep some Africanized honeybees.

    You go in with the right attitude and it is not that bad. Suit up completely bee-proof, get 2 big AHB smokers, and manage them well. They learn to tolerate you if you are consistent, move slowly, and always feed them at the end of the visit.

    I did not go into the game expecting to not get stung a good bit. I just figured it comes with the territory.

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