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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We found some bees in a water meter box below a hedge. We pulled the comb and found the queen and put her in the box with (5 frame nuc box) Left it there and came back to check the hive and found all the bees had moved back in the water meter. I checked the nuc and found red ants the biting type all over the comb and brood. I dumped the comb and set up a swarm trap with swarm lore about 2 feet from the water meter box up about 2 feet off the ground. Will they move in or do I have to move the box farther away? :scratch:
 

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Best plan would be set the hive up right on top of the water meter box. No bottom on the bee box and all the comb set into the bee box frames. the bees will move right in. Give them a couple weeks to settle & get brood rearing under way, then move it far away, I mean more than 2 miles, to a friend or family place who can babysit the hive for you for at least a month. After that, you can bring it back & put where you like.

Sounds likely it is a small colony, the issue will be getting it established with enough bees, and enough food stores, before winter. But you cannot feed it at the moment, it will encourage the ants and possibly do more harm than good. The bees should be given time to move into the hive & get settled. Then moved and given perhaps another week to re settle. Then they should be fed but not too much at first, only what they can store and protect you do not want robbing.
 

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Did you move the honey, too? Drippy honey frames will bring in the ants every time...

They won't move into a box where the ants have established themselves...THIS time that is.... Take the box back over from the ants. ASAP.

Find Momma again, and try with zero to minimal honey...Move the box from that location. If you get the queen, the colony should follow! Did you have her caged?
 

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In Florida we don't worry too much about winter. you have still got 4 good months to build out. Jwchesnut's warning about Africanized bees is accurate. Bees in water meters have a high chance of being Africanized. Small colonies are not usually too aggressive but be ready to requeen if they begin to show signs of getting mean. Requeening Africanized hives is a little harder so if you do have to requeen do some reading on them. If you have a queen cage or can make one cage the queen and put the nuc over the watermeter box with her in it.
by dark all the bees should have joined her.take the box to your bee yard and add a frame of uncapped brood. wait a few hours and let her out. Generally they will stay if you have brood. If you want to be sure put a queen excluder between the brood box and the bottom board. Then the bees can come and go but not the queen.
One nice thing about Africans they build really fast so watch your hive closely and evaluate their aggression regularly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I pulled a swarm out of this box last year and they turned very nasty. I just though it was a very hot hive I never though of AB. I split the hive and gave them a new queen now the hives are very calm. Very good workers. I will
re-queen the swarm if I get them to move. Thanks for the Info and I will try and find the queen then move them.
 
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