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Author Topic: Wild Swarm for first bees ? Advice please  (Read 1418 times)
AaronP77
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« on: January 20, 2009, 11:48:09 PM »

Ok so my beekeeping experience is this: working w/ a 35 yr seasoned bee keeper for one summer. I have read most everything I can find and want to keep bees naturally either foundationless or on 4.9mm comb for naturally sized honey bees.

There is a feral hive that I believe cam from someones hive that swarmed last summer ( about 1/8 mile). A friend found it on a warm afternoon the week after Christmas when the bees were doing their cleansing flights and showed it to me.  I have no bees, all the gear ( 2 supers 1 deep frames clothing hive tool) and I want to take these feral bees as so far the have survived the winter up here. also they look like carniolians.   The problem is the hive is in a  big juniper tree ( dead) any advice or threads on the best way to get the queen and brood frame? when i cut the tree w the chainsaw should I staple screen on the entrance to keep them in as I disassemble the tree?  (the person whose property it is wants them gone) and what tiem of year should i do this.spring ?
Any help would be appreciated as i cannot afford to buy package bees at this time and really want to get started this season! 
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aaron pauling
bugleman
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« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2009, 12:33:55 AM »

There is no way better to start beekeeping than you are suggesting.  An extraction requires patience, concentration and boldness at the same time.  I got my first bees out of a box of roofing vents.  What a rush.  It was about the size of a deep and about 1/3 full of comb.  Luckily they were extremely gentle bees.  My guess is they were Italians.

I like your thinking on small cell or natual comb too.  Start out as close as nature intended.  cool
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AaronP77
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« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2009, 03:22:36 AM »

Hey bugleman, what do you think of screening the hive enterence until i can take the trunk section with the hive in it apart from the rest of the tree? I am thinking that will keep them from gong nuts from the chainsaw. I remember when i placed hive staples in a 3 tier deep hive that got really ticked from that first staple. the guy teaching me said" oh a veil is just fine, bees dont fly at night"..they sure crawl though! .. i took like 20/25 stings in each leg . 
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aaron pauling
iddee
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« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2009, 08:16:57 AM »

Keep in mind, you are in AHB territory. Suit up well and be ready to kill them all if more than 50 or so attack. Have a couple of cans of spray with you.

If you can screen the entrance, do so. Cut the tree and cut above the hive and below it, smoking them as needed. Keep cutting until they are in as small a log as you can make.

Remove the screen and split the log open. Cut the brood comb and attach it into frames. Gather the honey and cover it so they cannot get into it. They will get sticky and drown if they do.

Leave the hive next to the tree for a day or so, giving them time to orient to the hive and clean up any honey that is left.

Close the entrance at night and take them home.

Do the job when your spring is just beginning. You will want them to have nectar and pollen to bring in. You don't want to do it when they are living on winter stores. Also do it on a clear, sunny day with the temp. above 70 F.
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JP
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« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2009, 08:29:20 AM »

Aaron, I would get some of the bees tested for AHB if you could as like Iddee mentioned you are in prime AHB territory.

Check out the honeybee removal section on this site for more ideas. I like the idea of closing all holes off before you cut the section out, in fact this is a must really.

Make sure you keep the bee section of the tree in the same position it was until you do the transfer so you don't mess up the combs and smoosh bees and weaken them.

Yes, early spring would be best.

And, is that a Savannah monitor on your head?


...JP
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AaronP77
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« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2009, 12:35:22 PM »

Yes JP that is my savannah Icky Tick Tavvi, i just call him Icky, though. I raise tropical roaches for reptile food(also for a living)  and I have about 20 lizards and 40 or so snakes. As far as AHB goes, I was at the mouth of the hive, less then 1/4 mile away a guys hive swarmed (last summer) and there were kids yelling and screaming ( sledding) right by the hive the day it is found. Also it seems (from listening to the tree trunk) that there are a quite a bit of bees in there. From what I have been told the AHB dont usually show up here until spring( i am in NE Arizona, we get full winters snow and all). I will be suited though and if the place i have to put the hive is fairly remote, so if they are AHB i will simply requeen them.  thanks for the advice and if anyone has more feel free. I am always open to information  grin
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aaron pauling
JP
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I like doing cut-outs, but I love catching swarms!


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« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2009, 07:17:23 PM »

Yes JP that is my savannah Icky Tick Tavvi, i just call him Icky, though. I raise tropical roaches for reptile food(also for a living)  and I have about 20 lizards and 40 or so snakes. As far as AHB goes, I was at the mouth of the hive, less then 1/4 mile away a guys hive swarmed (last summer) and there were kids yelling and screaming ( sledding) right by the hive the day it is found. Also it seems (from listening to the tree trunk) that there are a quite a bit of bees in there. From what I have been told the AHB dont usually show up here until spring( i am in NE Arizona, we get full winters snow and all). I will be suited though and if the place i have to put the hive is fairly remote, so if they are AHB i will simply requeen them.  thanks for the advice and if anyone has more feel free. I am always open to information  grin


Not to get off topic, cause we rarely do that here (ha ha!) but I am cultivating a colony of dubias for my two bearded dragons, pyxie frog, two pacmans and two whites tree frogs. I am very excited as I will soon have the pic of the litter of a gravid blood python.


...JP
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"Good friends are as sweet as honey" Winne the Pooh

My pictures can be viewed at http://picasaweb.google.com/pyxicephalus
and
http://picasaweb.google.com/112138792165178452970

My Youtube videos can be viewed here: http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=JPthebeeman&aq=f

My website JPthebeeman.com http://www.jpthebeeman.com/jpthebeeman/
Michael Bush
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« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2009, 07:28:17 PM »

Keep in mind that starting beekeeping by getting swarms is not a totally reliable way to get bees.  You may or may not get a swarm.  I'd hedge my bets and buy some as well.

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Michael Bush
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AaronP77
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« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2009, 07:32:53 PM »

I will buy the bees as soon as I can afford to. I would have had nearly 1000 to spend this month but had to rebuild the front end of my truck....  I know that I may not get a strong colony out of this tree and may not even get the queen. But it is an option that has presented itself and I would rather have a shot at starting this year, even if i cannot get the money together to purchase bees.
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aaron pauling
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