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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,
I have just joined the forum after lurking for some time. I have just posted a more in depth description of my setup and location in a welcome forum post so I will keep it succinct here.

I am intending on making a few more splits this season and I want to know how long I can keep making splits safely, I am not planing on feeding but we have very mild winters usually with a few flows, there are still drones in my hives and a friends hives, that are quite close, have been swarming the past week.

Our paddock was mowed yesterday and the operator was "chased by a bunch of bees" and stung once on the face, I did not see it or even speak to the guy, so that's all I have. The hives are in a fenced area at least 20m from where he was confronted, he said he was going through a bunch of dandelion and they have been foraging heavily on the dandelion pollen. I did not think bees would act aggressively and especially as a group and with persistance like this away from the hive, am I incorrect in this belief? I have one nuc that should have a new queen, either a virgin or freshly mated, it was a still hot day after some rain, so she could have been flying that day, would any of that impact the bees aggressiveness away from the hive?
 

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The guy doing the mowing may have encountered one bee that bumped him a number of times before stinging him. Being bumped a half dozen times, while he was squinting and trying to take evasive actions and to swat away the bee may have made one seem like a lot! I agree with you that it is unlikely that he would have encountered aggressive bees (assuming no Africanized bees in your hives) at that distance.
 

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Bees seem to be very offended by internal combustion engines. I do know of a lot of people who had neighbors and works attacked by bees quite a ways from the original hive using landscaping equipment. Something about the noise or the exhaust fumes really sets them off sometimes, especially if its hot out.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for your replies.
It is possible that it was not a group of bees, as I said, I have not spoken to the guy, I will when he next comes round. We have no africanised bees in Australia, so I can confidently say, my bees are not africanised.
I have heard that bees are not major fans of engines but I mow the area around my hives with a push mower, much smaller admittedly, but I mow right up to the back of them and about 1m in front of them, without seeing the same aggression. The mower has also mowed much closer to the hives previously with no reaction. It was hot when he mowed. I will be mowing the apiary/ chook run today, so I will see if I get a reaction, it is a similarly hot day today. I will be suited up though!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I did wonder if it was wasps. I did the mowing in the apiary yesterday and got no reaction at all. Admittedly I was using a push mower, not a ride on, but I mowed all around my hives, right up to 60cm from the landing boards.
I was keeping an eye out for a wasps nest but didn’t see anything.
 
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