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help. bees are not orientating to new location

1670 Views 8 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  trottet1
On monday, I relocated my hive about 60-75 feet from the original location. There is a garage between the new and old locations. I timed the move where I would have 3 full days of cold knowing the bees would stay put. Today is the first day since that the bees are mildly active. I just noticed a few bees flying around the old location. I took one of my wife's flower pots with old dead sea grass in it and moved it to you the new location. I also stuck a couple sticks in it as a landmark for them.

1 do the few bees in old location just have really good memory retention, or can I expect many more bees to lose their way?

2 if this is a big problem, is creating the landmark about all I can do at this point?

Thank you for your time,

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I am guessing that some of the bees had such an urge to get out that they did not reorient. If the weather in your area is warm enough they will find the hive or as life is it ends.
get them all inside at night and then pack grass clippings in the opening...then put an outer cover over the hole so they have to crawl around it to fly away....they will re-orient this way
What acebird said. Whenever moving short distances they will not reorient unless you do something to stress them or move a few miles. I moved a hive 10 ft with-in eyesight of the old location, they went to the original spot then circled around and finally found the new location. This was during summer so not problem of them dying of cold.
For me it has been pretty much impossible to move a hive like that and get them to reorient. In an apiary with several hives it isn't too much of a problem, because they will beg in somewhere in their old neighborhood and no one gets stuck out in the cold. It is useful to have somewhere far enough away to keep splits while they forget about their old spot - but you can also work around it and use this behavior to your advantage too.
Thanks for taking the time to read and respond to my situation. Always appreciate help from all the fine folks here at beesource.

You need something they have to notice coming out. Like grass in the entrance, a board blocking their path that they have to fly around, or a branch with a lot of leaves that they have to navigate through. These will cause reorientation. They will still fly back to the old place, but if they reoriented they will remember the new location and fly back there. It's also important NOT to leave anything at the old location that they can mistake for home, at least not until dark. Otherwise they will move in and not look for the new location. You want them to spiral out and find the new location, which they will do if there is nothing at the old location.
Thank you MB. I already cluttered the landing board with hay. I will remove bails of hey from old location. Thank you for the info.
Well, I did what everyone suggested. Cluttered up landing board with obstacles, and cleaned up old location. Sure enough, alot of activity at new location and the bees are circling around like a lil tornado. Even saw some bringing in yellow pollen. Thank you all so very much!

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