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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Beeks,
Well I've finally gone all in and got some bees after reading books, watching videos and scouring the forums for months.
I thought I knew a lot until I put on the "Michelin Man" suit and walked up to the hive. First bee that left the landing board got a heavy puff of smoke and hit the ground, 1st casualty. Then I opened up the hive, I was so nervous I really don't remember what I saw besides a small area of drone cells, a lot of capped brood and bees, lots of bees.
I wanted to check the hive because there were so many bees coming and going that the entrance was getting clogged up. In a 10 frame deep I had 4 frames of capped brood, 3 frames of stores and 2 frames of drawn comb.
I added another 10 deep with wax foundation and opened the entrance.

The bees are local survivors from a long time reputable bee keeper. He installed a 5 frame nuc into my 10 and observed it for a few weeks to make sure the queen was laying and the colony was thriving.

I'm feeding a 2:1 sugar mix with a drop of vanilla per 16 oz on a Boardman feeder, they have taken a little over 2 gal in 4 days.

I saw my first SHB tonight, but only about 5 dead bees off the porch so far.

My concern is if they can eat that much without being robbed. I put together a short video for you to watch, any comments would be appreciated.

Karl

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uNxa8-rMtfo&feature=youtu.be
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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The vanilla will only contribute to robbing. The feeding itself will contribute to robbing (though not as bad without the "smell" added). It's May in OK and things are blooming. There is no reason to feed and a lot of reasons not to... ants, robbing, backfilling the brood nest...
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for the response Mr. Bush.
No more feeding for now.
Did you happen to notice at the end of the video that bee doing the crazy gyrations, what do you suppose that was about?
 

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Hello Beeks,
Well I've finally gone all in and got some bees after reading books, watching videos and scouring the forums for months.
I thought I knew a lot until I put on the "Michelin Man" suit and walked up to the hive. First bee that left the landing board got a heavy puff of smoke and hit the ground, 1st casualty. Then I opened up the hive, I was so nervous I really don't remember what I saw besides a small area of drone cells, a lot of capped brood and bees, lots of bees.
I wanted to check the hive because there were so many bees coming and going that the entrance was getting clogged up. In a 10 frame deep I had 4 frames of capped brood, 3 frames of stores and 2 frames of drawn comb.
I added another 10 deep with wax foundation and opened the entrance.

The bees are local survivors from a long time reputable bee keeper. He installed a 5 frame nuc into my 10 and observed it for a few weeks to make sure the queen was laying and the colony was thriving.

I'm feeding a 2:1 sugar mix with a drop of vanilla per 16 oz on a Boardman feeder, they have taken a little over 2 gal in 4 days.

I saw my first SHB tonight, but only about 5 dead bees off the porch so far.

My concern is if they can eat that much without being robbed. I put together a short video for you to watch, any comments would be appreciated.

Karl

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uNxa8-rMtfo&feature=youtu.be
Sounds like perhaps your smoke is too hot?, thus the first casualty. Blow smoke on your hand to make sure it is cool. Also hot smoke tends to make bees agitated. hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Good point, I hadn't thought about the smoke being too hot.
Thank you
 

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I often put a handful of green grass inside the top of my smoker. It seems to cool the smoke pretty good.
Thanks for this. My smoke seems to be really angering the bees. It's not hot but it's not cool either. I'll give that a shot next time!
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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http://www.bushfarms.com/beessmoke.htm

The most common smoking mistakes:

o People have the smoker too hot and burn the bees with the flame thrower they are wielding
o People use far too much smoke causing a general panic instead of simply interfering with the alarm pheromone. One puff in the door is enough. Another on the top if they look excited is ok and after that having it lit and setting nearby is usually sufficient.
o People don't light the smoker because they think smoke upsets the bees, probably because of one of the above reasons.
o People blow the smoke in and immediately open the hive. If you wait a minute the reaction will be completely different. If you’re doing something not too time consuming, like filling frame feeders or something, it’s a good plan to smoke the next hive before you open this one. That way the minute will be up when you open that one.
o People don’t smoke because they have the idea that it is either bad for the bees or somehow unnatural. Their exposure is only a puff or two once every week or two. People have been smoking bees for at least 8,000 years that we have documented for one very good reason. Nothing works better at calming them.

Success and failure are all in the details...
 

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I put a super with left over honey from winter on ea beehive. It is still cool here in WNY 40-60 degrees with 35 degree nites. When I tried to remove the supers, the bees are all 'up in it'. Should I still remove the supers or just leave them? the bees are bringing in small bits of pollen. I have stopped giving them pollen patties. Your thoughts are appreciated.
 
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