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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here lately, I have seen bumble bees and the black mud dauber type wasp trying to get in my hives. Matter of fact, I killed a big fat Bumble Bee when he came out of the hive on the "porch."

Is this pretty common ? I'm not a fan on non worker's in our country, and I'm not happy with these insects trying to get a free lunch.

What is yall's thoughts and course of actions on this? I have had my first experience with the "sugar ants.". They are really tiny. I read on the forum here to use cinnimon and not sure it's working really good.

Best to all,

casper_zip
 

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Shrink your entrance and/or put some 1/4" mesh in front of the entrance. Bees can get threw it but bumbles can't. Daubers I don't worry about.
 

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I didn't know bumble bees were a big issue :s We have tons around here and my daughter was thinking about raising bumble bees. Would that be a serious conflict with the honey bees? Don't honeybees tend to take care of the robbing bee problem. I understood that if the bees couldn't defend themselves from robbers than the hive was weak to begin with???
 

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Bumblebees are not the issue beekeepers think. I have heard beeks worry about competition from BBs but since BB colonies are never very large perhapes 100-150 max, they are not really a serious issue. These native pollinators have been in north America for thousands of years. Their numers are in serious decline also. They should be preserved and enjoyed as a fellow pollinator. The lone bumblebee was probably a queen looking for a nesting spot or was attracted to the smells of the hive. The guard bees are more than a match for a few bumblebees. Mud wasps are anoying but harmless to your honeybees. They sometimes build their nest under hive lids. Now in late summer yellow jackets and hornets are a threat. Large colonies and very aggressive.
 

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I agree....besides.....the ladies will handle an errant bumblebee...i have seen one propolised inside the hive and had once buzzing a hove while inspecting the other day. It was cool to watch them sick it....but their numbers are greatly down as well.....so i leave them alone....I did however catch my kids beaning them with tennis rackets the other day...and yes, i stopped it....
 

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Good things to know because we LOVE bumble bees here. I have quite a large number visiting my roses.

Hornets and wasps are another issue. Seems we have a big problem with those this year. :(
 

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Dose any one know what a bumble bee hive looks like? I have seen them nest in the ground and never able to see the comb or hive. I have many flying around here and have not noticed them at my hives and they never bother me.

Some one mentioned raising them. What would be the purpose of doing so? They do not make honey so would it be for pollination only?
 

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Boknows, check out youtube. Search on Bumblebee nests and there are many vids showing BB & their nests. The nest itself are a single globular comb with brood cells intermixed with honey storage pots in what seems to be an unorganized mass. The nest are made of wax and propolis. As for their use. In many locations they and other native bees are the only game in town for pollination. They where here long before the introduction of European honeybees just doing their thing. They are commercially farmed just like honeybees for the greenhouse industry and a single BB box-hive can cost several hundreds dollars. You can actually buy little wooden BB hive boxes from KnoxCellars.com to start your own colony. They work on the principle of attracting a nest-site hunting spring queen or you can physically capture a queen and install her in the box. The colony is seasonal, starting in the spring and dying out in the fall. So any BumbleBee problem you have will only last that one summer.
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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Once in a while I find a dead bumble bee (with all the hair pulled off they are black) in the hive. I never bother them and usually the bees drive them off. I try to protect the bumble bees. They are having issues like the honey bees and are just as important...
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks so much for this info on the Bumble bees. I know they are great foragers/pollinators. I won't kill them again.

However, I will keep killing the big "carpenter" bumble bees. They bore holes in all wooden buildings that is not treated lumber.

I load 38 special shells with a dab of powder, and put a tissue wadding in, and then top off with mustard seeds, and seal it with wax. This only becomes successful after much practice.


Best,

casper_zip
 

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Carpenter bees are a whole different issue. They can cause serious damage to anything made of wood including beehives I suppose. Get Rid of those guys. C-zip you seem to know the difference but I think most people wouldn't know. They look very similar to the untrained eye. Interesting solution you came up with to plug their holes. The .38 round is a nice touch! :D
 
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