First off, sorry if I lured anyone in, by mentioning I would be making this post in general. Had to say that to keep order in the forums as I obviously was a bad boy for doing that. Ok.
As for the removal, it was, according to the owner of the house, a 15yr old hive. These were the smallest bees I have ever encountered, they had large numbers, I am guessing perhaps as many as 60-70,000, but who's counting, right?
They were surprisingly gentle for a hive of this age, I figured I would be dealing with a large hot hive but this wasn't the case. I did not take a measurement but the hive was in my estimation between 8 and 9' long.
You can not obviously go in from the exterior to remove a beast like this, so I went in through the sheetrock ceiling, at least that's what the guy told me, and it looked like sheetrock. It was sheetrock, but with plaster underneath, so I had to whack that out as well. Whacking and cutting for like an hour to get the colony exposed.
I started on the opposite end of the entrance and removed the honeycomb first. Besides, I wasn't sure how far past the light fixture the comb had traveled. The comb stopped even with the beginning edge of the light fixture.
Once I had removed about 70lbs of honeycomb (which was excellent by the way) I hit brood comb. I was perhaps 2 hrs into the removal and by golly, I removed a section of comb and there she was in all her glory. Got a few good pictures of her too.
I wound up making two deeps to house them and almost pulled my back out getting them downstairs and onto my trailer. The combs were so old looking that I decided not to use a lot of it. I figure I could have filled four deeps easy on this one.
As an interesting sidenote, I wore this stupid shirt that my sister n law gave me, that has a picture of a squirrel with a nut. The caption on the shirt says, "Protect your nuts!" Well, I should have heeded my shirt's own advice, and protected mine, the left one to be exact. Man did that hurt!http://picasaweb.google.com/pyxicephalus/March192008