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Author Topic: keeping away unwanted animals  (Read 2658 times)
jester7891
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« on: February 10, 2008, 06:38:45 PM »

Hi! I will starting with my first 2 bee hives in about two months (New Jersey/Pennsylvania border – zone 6a).  I have found a mentor who has been really helpful.  One question I forgot to ask is about animals.  I live in a very wooded area with lots of foxes, skunks, raccoons, coyotes and the very occasional bear.  the hives will not be in the woods but close by on the edge.  I would appreciate any suggestions on keeping these critters out.  I was even considering buying an enclosed dog pen.  Thanks.
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reinbeau
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« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2008, 06:45:11 PM »

If you've got bears then you really need an electric fence.  We got most of our wire, posts, etc. from the local feed and grain, but we got the energizer from Kencove.  We set ours up right behind the garage, so we plug it in, but the solar chargers work well.  We know we had at least one visit last season, I guess the 8,500 volts to the snout made the bear leave a little dropping for us - I wish I'd taken a picture (I've got bear poop waypoints in my GPS, we're strange that way!  cheesy)

In all seriousness, once you smell your yard when they're processing that honey, you'll understand how bears find hives.  Prevention is far easier than trying to protect your hives after a bear attack.
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CapeCod
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« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2008, 07:15:38 PM »

I can't remember where but there was a very recent post ,,,,Human Male Urine.
Mark around the hives with it and it keeps most animals at bay
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reinbeau
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« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2008, 07:22:02 PM »

The urine info is from this thread in the Farm and Country Living forum.  However, don't expect urine to keep away a bear who has the scent of a beehive.  They smell the honey, they want the brood - very high protein food for them, the honey is dessert!
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- Ann, A Gardening Beek -  ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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Michael Bush
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« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2008, 09:22:44 PM »

http://www.bushfarms.com/beespests.htm
http://www.bushfarms.com/beeslazy.htm#topentrance
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Michael Bush
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Cass Cohenour
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« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2008, 12:38:14 AM »

Find a free coon dog, preferably a trash runner (you can find these dogs very cheap or free), and chain it up. It'll bark at anything and keep the animals at bay.
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blckoakbees
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« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2008, 12:54:33 AM »

My hives are in the woods in the foothill of California and there are bears. 
We put up an electric fence with a solar fence charger and it has worked great.  We hung four strings of tape.  I used plastic fence posts and in all it took us less than an hour to put it up.

Good luck.
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annette
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« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2008, 01:26:04 AM »

My hives are in the woods in the foothill of California and there are bears. 
We put up an electric fence with a solar fence charger and it has worked great.  We hung four strings of tape.  I used plastic fence posts and in all it took us less than an hour to put it up.

Good luck.

Where in the foothills?  I am in Placerville and have been told no bears around my hives. Are you up further???
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Sean Kelly
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« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2008, 06:24:12 AM »

We have critters too.  Build a fence like mine and put a hotwire around it:



I made it for free from scrap fencing I found laying around.  I've since doubled the size to accomodate for a total of 5 colonies.  smiley

Sean Kelly
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danno
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« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2008, 08:45:54 AM »

being a K9 trapper for 30plus years I can tell you urine of any kind will only attract animals.  I catch rabbits in coyote sets for example.  Deer will seek out and stomp a set with fox urine.  Animals use urine to tell otheres that I WAS here not I am here.  Just like the dog that has to pee on every post they pass.  When they smell a marked spot they add a shot of there own.  The electric fence will work but I have a added little trick with mine.  About every 20 ft I take a pc of foil with a smear of peanut butter pinched over the wire.  With this method the peanut butter is protected from sun and rain and when a animal aproaches they take the voltage on there wet noses not there hairy bodies.  It really gets there attention
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Cindi
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« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2008, 11:35:46 PM »

Sean, that looks like a really nice apiary, good for you, how much bigger is it now?  Curious.

Danno, I do like the idea of the peanut butter in the bent over foil, sounds excellent. Have a wonderful and beautiful day, love our life.  Cindi
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« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2008, 12:49:52 AM »

[...they take the voltage on there wet noses not there hairy bodies. ]

Water conducts much better.... I like this idea.

That is much cheaper than my friend George Glock who is .45.
He makes soup out of the little ones.

I need a younger friend, listening to George makes my ears hurt.
He does have great night vision though.
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2008, 03:33:09 AM »

Find a free coon dog, preferably a trash runner (you can find these dogs very cheap or free), and chain it up. It'll bark at anything and keep the animals at bay.

Yeap, works like a charm.  When I was in High School I had a pack of hound dogs chained up to dog houses between the pigeon pen and the bee hives.  Never had any kind of predator bother either birds or bees.
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Sean Kelly
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« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2008, 05:27:00 AM »

Sean, that looks like a really nice apiary, good for you, how much bigger is it now?  Curious.

It's double the size now.  I took down the right side and extended it out that direction.  It's not finished yet and my two hives are exposed now, takin a risk.  The size it is now I could probably fit 4 hives inside comfortably but might have some drifting problems.  But I'm getting 3 more packages this spring and figured it might be better to expand it now and not worry about it later.  I need to buy some more lumber cause I ran out of the old used stuff.  And I'm out of welded wire fencing for the inside too.  Man, I need a pickup truck!

Sean Kelly
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HockeymanVT
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« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2008, 04:12:08 PM »

Yea, I tried that male urine thing a few times but....
MAN it hurts when you get stung!
 cheesy
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Galaxy
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« Reply #15 on: February 14, 2008, 09:21:57 PM »

danno is right on using the peanut butter on the foil.  When animals get shocked and their eyes are outside the wire enclosure (for example, they are shocked on the nose) they will recoil and back away from the fence.  However, when their eyes are within the wire enclosure (for example, they are shocked on the shoulder) they will charge on through the fence.

I have an eight-foot high deer fence, surrounding ten acres, around more home.  The deer love my ornamental and vegetable plants, especially hosta and daylillies.  This fence uses eight high-tensile wires spaced one foot apart.  The bottom two wires are hot.  The next six alternate between gounded and hot. 

I have found that I you make all the wires hot, they will not get an adequate shock (12,000 volts) when the ground is dry.  The grounded wires are grounded to the fence controller.  This way even if an animal jumps through the fence they will receive a shock. 

By the way, it will get your attention!!! I know, I have been shocked a few times holding a ground wire down and stepping through the fence when it is on.  You will know it when you back accidentally grazes the hot wire above.  I can best describe it as if someone hit you with a baseball bat and at the same time every muscle in your body contracts.  At 66, I'm getting a little too old to be crawling through 12,000 volt electric fences.  So i think I will take the time to turn it off in the future.

But, I do know how the animals feel and it does work very well after they get use to it.  The contoller is from Tractor Supply and it is designed for 200 miles of fence.  However, lightening strikes are a problem.  If have three controllers, so I can be sure to have one on hand while others are being rebuilt.  I believe it cost about $100. to have one repaired.
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poka-bee
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« Reply #16 on: February 14, 2008, 10:14:04 PM »

My friend Kelly Kimber is also .45. & has great night visiion!  Imagine that! Kinda messy playing w/possums but a good friend just the same!  My other friend Arnie R is 15.. ia  bitquieter & can see critters far far away, though I have to scamper to S.S. & S!!
Jody
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Sean Kelly
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« Reply #17 on: February 17, 2008, 08:07:13 AM »

How about that Jody!  My friend Mac is 10 and is sometimes a little out of control when playing with possums.  Terrible vision but sure is noisy!  Lol

Sean Kelly
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woodchopper
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« Reply #18 on: February 20, 2008, 11:18:19 AM »

  When animals get shocked and their eyes are outside the wire enclosure (for example, they are shocked on the nose) they will recoil and back away from the fence.  However, when their eyes are within the wire enclosure (for example, they are shocked on the shoulder) they will charge on through the fence.
This way even if an animal jumps through the fence they will receive a shock. 
 
We think we had a skunk get on the wrong side of the fence. It didn't do any damage to the hives but it must of fried it's brain. We found an area where it kept going in circles until it died. Felt bad because we only wanted to scare the animals away and not kill them.
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danno
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« Reply #19 on: February 20, 2008, 02:02:33 PM »

woodchopper
Your Skunk probably died of  distemper.  A shock would most likely make him fire off and run
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