Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
100 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'M RELATIVELY NEW TO BEEKEEPING, I HAD A FELLOW PUT ME IN 4 HIVES MAINLY FOR POLINATION AS I'M FARMING 400 ACRES. DO TO LACK OF HIS ATTENTION THEY'RE DOWN TO 1 HIVE, SO IVE DECIDED TO JUMP IN WITH BOTH FEET---HOPE THE WATER WON'T BE TOO DEEP.
ANYWAY A NEIGHBOR AT AN ADJOINING FARM USED TO KEEP BEES, BUT DIED ABOUT 4 YEARS AGO. HE HAD ABOUT 20 HIVES. SINCE HIS DEATH THE HIVES HAVE ALL DIED DUE TO NEGLECT, PROBABLY TRACHEA MITES AND WHATEVER. HIS WIDOW STORED THE HIVES IN A BARN AS THEY DIED. SHE'S AGREED TO SELL THEM TO ME IF WE GET TOGETHER ON A PRICE.
IN TALKING TO AN OLD BEEKEEPER HE SAID I WOULD HAVE TO BOIL THE HIVES IN LYE TO GET RID OF THE MITE EGGS AND THE SMELL OF SOME KINDA BEETLE OR I WOULD NEVER GET THE HIVES TO TAKE BEES.
HOT LYE IS NOT SOMETHING I LOOK FORWARD TO WORKING WITH, IS THIS STANDARD PROCEEDURE, OR IS THERE A LESS CAUSTIC WAY TO RENEW THE HIVES?
I APPRECIATE ANY INFO I CAN GET.
THANKS,,,SHYLOCK3
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
307 Posts
Sounds a little drastic to me. I think you can just scrape off the excess propolis and burr comb with a hive tool and they will be fine.
the only danger is the possibility of AFB spores, and if that is the case they should be scorched inside with a torch.
Try a couple of hives inittaily and if you don't have a problem with AFB they should be fine. If you do have an AFB problem then treat them or burn them whatever your local laws allow.
I would not pay much for used equipment that has been sitting around for a while with no bees unless I was sure they didn't have any disease problems. Without bees its hard (if nopt impossible) to tell for sure.
 

·
Vendor
Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
Joined
·
54,120 Posts
>ALL DIED DUE TO NEGLECT, PROBABLY TRACHEA MITES

Probably Varroa mites.

>HE SAID I WOULD HAVE TO BOIL THE HIVES IN LYE TO GET RID OF THE MITE EGGS

The mites can only live and only reproduce (both varroa and tracheal mites) on living bees. There are no viable mite eggs in the hives.

> AND THE SMELL OF SOME KINDA BEETLE OR I WOULD NEVER GET THE HIVES TO TAKE BEES.

I don't know what kind of smell there would be. Wax moths maybe? Do you have small hive beetles there? I don't know. I have more trouble with the smell of mouse urine.

>HOT LYE IS NOT SOMETHING I LOOK FORWARD TO WORKING WITH, IS THIS STANDARD PROCEEDURE, OR IS THERE A LESS CAUSTIC WAY TO RENEW THE HIVES?

It's a common procedure to try to control AFB (American Foulbrood) that I've never done. There is always a risk with used hives, so you have to decide if you want to take that risk. I buy them and use them and have never had a problem. You might have the same luck as me or you could get AFB.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
792 Posts
Shylock3 -
Used/abandoned equipment is a mixed bag. I wouldn't pay a lot for it. It takes a LOT of time to scorch out a hive body and all of the frames (not to mention scraping them down, repairing broken frames, etc).
I'm glad to hear you're taking control of the bees - someone needs to care for them.
I bought a "lot" of used equipment equalling +- 6 hives plus supers plus an extractor last year for $400. I got a deal, that's for sure, but I still had to put in a lot of work.
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top