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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been keeping bees now for 4 years and have all my hives in my back yard. However, I got a good place out in the country just 7 miles away so I'm going to move everything out there. Any suggestions on making the move as easy as possible? Right now I have 11 hives, and each hive is overwintering in three mediums. Temps getting into the 40's and 50's so I figure the clusters should not be too tight for me to just pick them up, put them into the back of my pickup and haul them out to the new site. I appreciate any advice you can give.
 

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hey great you got a new bee yard just make sure you have stappled the hive bodies togeather and put on moving screens on the entrance have some one help you move the hives and secure them down good in the truck your moving them in. and all should be good.
 

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I've moved some of my hives...and I hate it. The first bunch I did at night. Bad idea. You can't find anything you lose in the long grass. Bees also crawl into every crevice and crease of your bee suit.

The second bunch I screened off at night, moved during daylight hours. Much better, but still too much heavy lifting and you really, really, really need to strap them down into your truck or trailer.

An old fireman once told me, regarding rope and tyeing down loads: "If you can't tie a knot, use a lot." Don't think one rope or strap is enough, and use hive staples on all four sides, along every crack between boxes.

I once moved several three-deep hives by collecting a series of telescoping lids. I went out in the cool, early morning and smoked the heck out of them, then set each of the hive bodies on an inverted hive top, then placed a hive top on top of the brood box. All I was moving was a single brood box, three times over. Each hive body had a hive cover on the bottom and the top. Once at the new location, I gave ample smoke and reassembled the hives.

This was necessary as the new bee yard was not accessible by truck and hand cart. Now there's a lesson I should have seen coming! But it was a friend who wanted a couple of hives for the garden, I was young....and it's a long story.

Now days, anytime I open a new yard I'm much more amenable to splitting my hives with new queens and moving either nuc boxes or single brood boxes. I also procured one of those "two man hive lifters" you see advertised in the ABJ.

Best of luck with the new yard!

Grant
Jackson, MO
 

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I would also have their stands ready to set them on when you get them out there. Whatever you use, wood, concrete blocks, etc. Take out a bottom board and level, set your stands just where you want them. Then all you have to do is set the hives off the truck onto their stands. Done deal. Besides, then you'll have your existing stands to set for your expansion! :applause:
Regards,
Steven
 

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I need to find an easier way to move hives myself. I am considering building single pallets and using a ramped trailer. A hand truck with pneumatic tires would be inserted into the back of the hive after it was strapped together. My thought here is that if you loaded from the side the frames may lay over and crush some bees (queen) when the hand truck is tipped back. I am hoping this will be easier than lifting double deeps onto the back of a truck by myself.
 

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When I moved my last four hives I did this. First I made a bottom board with two cleats on it. If a long move cut out a window and screen it. Then Box by box I put in the back of my van. I then put the tops on it Then I ran a ratch strap around it and and tighten it up. and away I go. Did wear my Vail for the bees that where flying. Like to do it right at dusk. With the cleat I can slide the strap under easyly plus they get some air.
David/toledo
 

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Consider removing some empty frames and consolidating them down to 2 mediums. That will make it considerably easier. Buy a cheap strapping machine. (Harbor Freight.)

Dickm
 

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  1. Get you new yard setup first.
  2. Screen shut entrance at night. I use window screen and staple gun.
  3. Strap everything down with racheting strap(s)....real tight at night. (I don't go over 2 brood boxes high)
  4. Move hives next morning to new yard and setups.
  5. Move strapped hive from PU to actual setup.
  6. Remove strap(s)
  7. Smoke entrance and remove screen wire or slice through it and remove later.
Personally I would leave a few in my yard. You will miss them and the enjoyment of watching them when you are out in the yard. Plus at 7 miles you could still have differences in weather (rain or no rain) so all of your eggs are not in one pot. Plus what blooming could be somewhat different.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks all. I do plan to leave a couple in my back yard. the new place is on a creek bottom with lots of elms, cotton woods, wild plums, etc and then across the creek there are miles of pasture with wildflowers, yucca and lots of mesquite. If the pasture dries up during the summer, the location is only about 3/4 mile from the golf course and the edge of town where folks plant flowers all summer long. Hope the bees don't end up spending too much time on the golf course
 

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Living in a warm climate means we have to move hives at night.

Just make sure you have everything ready. Close the hives just on dark, strap them with EMLOCK Fasteners ( http://www.johnlguilfoyle.com.au/Web pamphlets/Emlock Hive Fastener.pdf) - they are surely available in the US?

Don'y use ropes to hold them down if you are not good with knots, use adjustable straps.
I place a rubber door mat on the truck and one hive on top of each. It takes a lot of the shacking out of the trip and it is easier to get a load secure.
 

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The new place is on a creek bottom with lots of elms, cotton woods, wild plums, etc and then across the creek there are miles of pasture with wildflowers, yucca and lots of mesquite.
Make sure you bees are above the flood plain for that creek. 100 year flood plain. If not, you may have bees floating away like some of the beeks on this site had last year!!!
 

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Amen to flooding! I lost 12 hives one time, when I thought they were high enough.
 
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