Feral Bees???
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Thread: Feral Bees???

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Claiborne County, East Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    98

    Default Feral Bees???

    I was just reading on the forums here and someone mentioned feral bees . In reading ,it turns out that there were other bees around fairly close. Is it just me or is that not truly feral bees?
    I know I have some swarms I have caught around here and they don't seem any different than my other bees. I have one hive however, that I caught in the mountains miles from anyone. These seem a smaller and slightly more aggressive than my regular Italians. The comb cells they make is also smaller.
    I consider these feral bees even though I know that somewhere in the past they were probably someone's bees. I am thinking that they have been on their own so long that they would be considered feral bees. Your thoughts?
    Some days it's not worth chewing through the restraints.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Northern Il, USA
    Posts
    510

    Default Re: Feral Bees???

    Feral means a domestic animal that has gone wild. Any honeybee in the US not in a human provided home is by definition feral. I got a swarm last year. It probably came from my neighbor's hive. I put it in a box so it isn't feral, but if it had gone into a tree it would be feral.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Claiborne County, East Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    98

    Default Re: Feral Bees???

    Actually the definition of feral I was talking about is "reverting back to a wild state". It takes some time for this to occur. A swarm going into a tree is still domesticated bees....just not in a man-made hive.
    The ones I am talking about are the ones that have survived on their own .
    Last edited by fadder; 02-19-2020 at 01:35 PM.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Northern Il, USA
    Posts
    510

    Default Re: Feral Bees???

    Sorry, used to be an English teacher and still a bit pedantic. It's obvious what you were saying but my habit is to 'correct' things that really don't need correcting.

    I don't know how you could identify true feral bees, meaning bees that had lived several or many generations without human intervention. Domestic bees vary so much in color, size, personality.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Claiborne County, East Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    98

    Default Re: Feral Bees???

    It's true about color and size. These are smaller and the comb they produce is very small cell. Also these were caught about 10 - 12 miles from houses or farms.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Greenville, NC, USA
    Posts
    204

    Default Re: Feral Bees???

    I believe there re some feral bees in some back woods areas. If you could find the tree they probably will cast a swarm every year just because of needed space. Most wooded land has been logged { in my area} so the big, old trees with large cavities are mostly gone. Be aware of mite loads and if the cells/bees are smaller you might want to keep them on frames without foundation.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Claiborne County, East Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    98

    Default Re: Feral Bees???

    That's what I have been doing. I figure the small cells might help with mites, but who knows. I am still treating when needed.

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