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Author Topic: driving with bees  (Read 1529 times)
VTnewbee
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« on: April 27, 2009, 10:34:00 AM »

Yet another new-bee question!  I'm kind of embarassed to ask this one as it seems that no one else has ever mentioned it, so I'm thinking this is only something an oddball like me would not know.  embarassed  Is it safe to drive with a nuc or package of bees in your car?  I have a hatchback, so the trunk isn't a separate sealed off area.  Are the bees tucked safely inside the nuc, or do some occasionally slip out?  I've read several beekeeping books cover to cover and none of them have mentioned anything about safely transporting bees.
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annette
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« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2009, 10:36:40 AM »

They should be packaged properly so that the bees do not get out.  You  can check the box very carefully before placing into your car.
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VTnewbee
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« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2009, 10:40:31 AM »

Phew!  Thank you!  I figured it must not be too difficult to transport them or I would have seen it mentioned in the books.  People at work were laughing at me when I told them I was planning on keeping the bees in the hatchback with me.
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ccwonka
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« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2009, 10:44:20 AM »

I built some screened bottom boards with NO exit to transport mine - basicaly the exact same design as a telescoping cover, but instead of plywood and sheet metal I used METAL (not fiberglass) window screen with well stapled and taped edges.  bungee strapped the hives closed for the trip - when I got home I simply removed the bottom screen and placed the hive on the bottom board in place.  Probably a little paranoid, but I figure you should never underestimate the panic factor inherent in us when one bee is loose in the car, much less 10,000. grin
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iddee
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« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2009, 02:41:42 PM »

It really depends on the person. I transported 44 nucs 65 miles Sat. 42 on a trailer and 2 in the suv with me and 2 other people. There were approx. a dozen flying around in the suv when we arrived. No one was bothered and all went well.

If you ignore the loose ones, they will ignore you. If you swat and slap at them, they will deposit their stinger in an appropriate place.
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"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

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Doby45
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« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2009, 02:49:26 PM »

I am moving my 8 hives this weekend from south Georgia up to Powder Springs.  I will get some pics of the move process.  My hives are on pallets, as in 2 hives on a half pallet.  They will have metal window screen covering the top hole in the mig top and a removable screen door will be placed over the main entrance.  Once they are strapped down to the pallet and the entrances covered there should not be a single bee lost.  Once we drop them in their new location we will simply remove the screen doors on the main entrance and the pallet straps.
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TimLa
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« Reply #6 on: April 27, 2009, 06:00:47 PM »

I always transport packages in the cab of the truck with me when I pick them up.  I had one escapee this year, that I didn't notice until I arrived (she may have hitchhiked from where I picked them up).

-T
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MustbeeNuts
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« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2009, 06:18:14 PM »

I have a suv and I just set mine in the back, six packages, there were bees all over the outside of the packages as well. they never flew around or anything they just sat right there and that was over a bumpy dirt road. Last year I did the same. there were a bunch in the car with me, they just fly up to the windows.  and try to get out. Its not as bad as it seems. they won't bother you unless they get down your shirt or something.
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Tucker1
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« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2009, 07:02:27 PM »

I've never had a problem. Like many, I just put the packages in the seat right besides me or place them in the back seat. Then we put a good ole country station on the radio and the girls calm right down. I'm guessing it must be the sweet sounds of a steel guitar that  brings out the best in them.

Seriously, I haven't had a problem. I do try to manage the temperature inside the vehicle and match it to the outside temperature. That's the only special treatment they get.

 In fact, I rather enjoy hearing them hummmm as we go down the road. That's a real calming sound.

Regards,
Tucker

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rast
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« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2009, 07:41:44 PM »

 I've hauled them in the back of an Explorer open. Just set the rear AC on high and don't know that I needed that. Something about the vibration of the vehicle seems to keep them calm. Just keep a veil beside you just in case.
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Davepeg
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« Reply #10 on: April 27, 2009, 08:09:53 PM »

I remember the first year we picked up our nucs - I almost freaked when my husband said we were just going to keep them in the back of the explorer we no covering.  The first time is always a bit nerve racking.  But if you just remain calm, even if one girl gets out, you'll be fine.
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EasternShore
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« Reply #11 on: April 27, 2009, 08:32:15 PM »

The only thing I might add to all this is..just treat them like your children and don't close the windows and go for lunch somewhere...they will overhead..
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fermentedhiker
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« Reply #12 on: April 27, 2009, 08:59:16 PM »

I had the same experience as most already posted.  A 5 hour drive with probably 50 loose bees clinging on the outside of the packages.  Maybe a dozen or so bothered to fly around.  The only problem I think we had was stopping at a filling station a bunch flew out of the open window and started orienting on the car which we promptly drove away in.  I wish I could've seen the face of the person who pulled up to fill behind us  grin
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Daddys Girl
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« Reply #13 on: April 27, 2009, 09:41:24 PM »

The bees come in a pretty secure crate.  Sometimes single bees -might- push out through a gap in the screen, but that doesn't happen all that much.  You might, however, have a straggler or two who will be following the queen pheromone and occasionally take a buzz around the vehicle.  This has happened a couple of times to me, but they generally settle in because queen pheromone is that powerful of a draw.

I drove my first package 3 hours home and no problems.  Just secure them so they don't roll or slide around and keep them cool.
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deerhunter
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« Reply #14 on: April 27, 2009, 09:46:21 PM »

I picked up some bees one time placed in in my SUV and was coming home got a call and forgot about a sharp corner hit the brakes real fast the top pops off and had one of the worst rides home in a long time.... Them little boogers got real mad and where looking for someone to take there aggression out on. shocked

Moral of this story is make sure the boxes are held down good.

I now use my Pickup truck with a cap to haul the bees.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #15 on: April 28, 2009, 10:49:16 PM »

It's like driving and drinking coffee.  If you get distracted by the coffee, then it's not safe.  If you don't, it's fine.  If you freak out when a bee flies in your face, it's not safe.
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hankdog1
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« Reply #16 on: April 28, 2009, 11:33:14 PM »

It's like driving and drinking coffee.  If you get distracted by the coffee, then it's not safe.  If you don't, it's fine.  If you freak out when a bee flies in your face, it's not safe.

Yeah but doesn't that depend on how hot the coffee is when you hit the bump that dumps it out between one's legs?  I think i'll take the bees any day over the coffee.
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SgtMaj
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« Reply #17 on: April 29, 2009, 04:53:34 AM »

There may be one or two loose bees, expecially if you just picked up a swarm, there will inevitably be a couple that make their way into your car that were never in the hive to begin with.  At least that's been my experience, someone might know a way to keep it from happening.  I just open my window so the wind keeps any loose bees from buzzing around my face. 
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Rabbitdog
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« Reply #18 on: April 29, 2009, 12:26:39 PM »

I've hauled 2 colonies at one time in my sedan's back seat when my truck was in the shop.  The only concern that I had was that possibly I could be in an accident.  If urgent response by Police/Fire/Rescue was necessary, then the thousands of swarming and angry bees could have caused a life threatening delay embarassed ...... Just something to think about.
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Natalie
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« Reply #19 on: April 29, 2009, 12:43:54 PM »

I picked up 2 nucs a couple of weeks ago and put them on the backseat of the car, it didn't even occur to me to be nervous about it.
As long as they are packaged securely you shouldn't have anything to worry about.
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