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Author Topic: Absconding and absconding and absconding...  (Read 4087 times)
Grandma_DOG
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« on: June 02, 2009, 12:18:30 PM »

I did a cutout Sunday. Easy, under a shed.  First year hive, white easy-to-tear comb. Bees were awesome, the most gentle hive I have ever dealt with.



I use Top Bar hives for my cutouts, a few drops of Lemon Grass Oil, and a little honey to encourage them to stay.

Video of hive here:


I got all the comb on Sunday, but the queen retreated deep under the shed. I ran out of light and patience and left the new hive there next to the old, hoping the queen et all would move in with the rest of the hive by Monday.

Monday, the queen absconded to a nearby small tree 6' up. All bees left the brood in the KTBH. I found this odd. Plan a failed.  So I brushed them into the KTBH. I got the queen and the rest joined her in the KTBH.

I went to dinner while waiting for dusk. Then 1 hour later I got a call - the bees absconded again into the tree yet again. I returned 15 minutes before dusk, swept them into the KTBH yet again.  AT dusk sealed her up and moved the hive to my outyard.

Is absconding so quickly normal?
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MollySuesHoney
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« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2009, 12:48:13 PM »

I've had cut out colonies who repeatedly absconded.  Sometimes in the same day.  Others  seem content wherever you put them.  They all have their own 'personality'.  I have found that sometimes it helps not the open the hive until they have spent a night in their new home.  But, sometimes that accomplishes nothing.
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« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2009, 01:01:02 PM »

i spray the inside of the hive/comb, etc. with a light spray of lemongrass and sugar water.  a little on the bees doesn't hurt either.  seems to work.  i also feed as soon as i can.  figure it gives them a reason to stay. 
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

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« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2009, 12:15:41 AM »

GrandmaDOG.  So nice that you got to work with such a gentle colony, with such beautiful comb.  Too bad they they are intent on leaving.  Hope they eventually wind up sticking around, they sound like beauties to deal with.  Have that beautiful and wonderful day, to love, live and enjoy.  Cindi
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« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2009, 05:28:32 AM »

even with a tbh, you can staple an excluder over the entrance as a queen includer.

when I first started doing cut outs I lost several and thought....hmmmm it sure looked like there were more bees in there the other day...  eventually I found a cluster nearby in the grass one day and started using an includer for 2-3 days to get them settled
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JP
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« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2009, 10:09:54 AM »

Quote "Is absconding so quickly normal?" Like others have mentioned, some colonies have a mind of their own. I think it also depends on the bees in your area.

Bud's area in Macon, Mississippi, his bees are very swarmy, swarms or cutouts.

We did three cut outs while we were there, all three wound up swarming out, which would be utterly ridiculous for my area, natural for his.

I have seen cut outs abandon brood on occasion, but its not the norm where I live.


...JP
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2009, 11:54:17 PM »

Quote
[Monday, the queen absconded to a nearby small tree 6' up. All bees left the brood in the KTBH. I found this odd. Plan a failed.  So I brushed them into the KTBH. I got the queen and the rest joined her in the KTBH.

I went to dinner while waiting for dusk. Then 1 hour later I got a call - the bees absconded again into the tree yet again. I returned 15 minutes before dusk, swept them into the KTBH yet again.  AT dusk sealed her up and moved the hive to my outyard.

Is absconding so quickly normal?/quote]

It is if the hive either doesn't like the new digs, in the event of a swarm or cutout, or if they already had a location selected if a swarm.
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Grandma_DOG
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« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2009, 04:29:47 AM »

Well, they absconded again. Gone. I may need to give up on KTBH's for cutouts and use Langs with queen excluders.
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JP
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« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2009, 08:44:25 AM »

Well, they absconded again. Gone. I may need to give up on KTBH's for cutouts and use Langs with queen excluders.

It could be a heat retention thing I wonder, as TBH's have much more open space to govern than Langstroths. Stressed cut out bees need all the tlc they can get, perhaps having to optimally heat a larger space while they are rebuilding from the stress of a cut out pushes them to a more confined location. Just a thought.


...JP
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Grandma_DOG
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« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2009, 01:29:01 PM »

Now that several months have passed, I have absorbed many suggestions to adapt to my cutouts.
Here's what I think my Standard Operating Procedure should be.  This is customed to my situation of having my outyard 20 miles away and visited monthly.

1. Use a Lang hive
2. Spray or drip Lemon Grass Oil inside
3. Use a Queen excluder and remove next visit.
4. Stuff the entrance with grass so the bees stay in for a few days before venturing out.
5. Put feed on, in my case a miller feeder.
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kathyp
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« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2009, 01:56:36 PM »

i'd go with everything but 4.  maybe one day, but  no more.  i don't even do that .  another thing that i think helps is the slip a frame of drawn comb into the middle.  it gives the queen a place to get busy while the other comb is being secured.  feeding for sure.  i put the lemongrass oil in the syrup.  the excluder is not a bad idea.  i remember for swarms, but never seem to for cutouts.  smiley
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
hardwood
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« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2009, 05:00:41 PM »

I've always use a queen excluder for cut outs and swarms...something my Father taught me. I would be very watchful of SHB in new cutouts. They can really take over when the colony is stressed.

Scott
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Grandma_DOG
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« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2009, 06:43:45 PM »

I've always use a queen excluder for cut outs and swarms...something my Father taught me. I would be very watchful of SHB in new cutouts. They can really take over when the colony is stressed.

Scott

What is it to look for, and what can be done when it is seen?
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hardwood
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« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2009, 06:56:20 PM »

Simply look for the beetles and/or their larva (Small worms). Whenever I hive a new colony I keep them as crowded as I can. You basically want a bee covering almost every inch of frame. That helps them keep control of the hive. I usually put two or three traps in with them too...slide one in the entrance (for bottom entrances) and lay one on top of the frames. I use the chloroplast plastic cardboard filled with boric acid and they work pretty well for me.

The Small Hive Beetles have been a real pain this year in central Florida and I've been changing out my traps on a weekly basis to keep up with them!

Hope that helps,
Scott
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"In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person's becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American...There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag...We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language...And we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people."

Theodore Roosevelt 1907
David LaFerney
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« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2009, 10:22:49 PM »

The SHB seemed to get steadily worse as the warm season progressed, and then when the weather broke cool a couple of weeks ago the numbers dropped a lot.  I'm guessing if you live in the land of endless summer they might just get worse and worse.
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kedgel
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« Reply #15 on: October 17, 2009, 08:55:53 PM »

i spray the inside of the hive/comb, etc. with a light spray of lemongrass and sugar water.  a little on the bees doesn't hurt either.  seems to work.  i also feed as soon as i can.  figure it gives them a reason to stay. 
I read in Langstroth's "The Hive and the Honey Bee" that a study showed that bees don't swarm on a full stomach.  That is why it is standard practice to swab the cage of bees before installing them into the new hive.  Even though they are shipped with a can of syrup, they don't all "tank up" from the can.  It's really cool to swab the screen with syrup and watch from the side.  You can see a million bee tongues poking through the screen lapping up the syrup.  I've bought bees 3 times and never had them abscond when installed after feeding them heavily. 
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Cindi
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« Reply #16 on: October 18, 2009, 10:05:23 AM »

i spray the inside of the hive/comb, etc. with a light spray of lemongrass and sugar water.  a little on the bees doesn't hurt either.  seems to work.  i also feed as soon as i can.  figure it gives them a reason to stay. 
I read in Langstroth's "The Hive and the Honey Bee" that a study showed that bees don't swarm on a full stomach.  That is why it is standard practice to swab the cage of bees before installing them into the new hive.  Even though they are shipped with a can of syrup, they don't all "tank up" from the can.  It's really cool to swab the screen with syrup and watch from the side.  You can see a million bee tongues poking through the screen lapping up the syrup.  I've bought bees 3 times and never had them abscond when installed after feeding them heavily. 

Well, that is very interesting.  I always thought that the bees swarmed on a full stomach, they eat all the honey they can and then leave to find there new home, now this is a rather confusing thing here, some answers would be great if they forthcame.  Have that great and most wonderfully awesome day, health.  Cindi
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« Reply #17 on: October 18, 2009, 04:05:13 PM »

Sorry, I wasn't clear.  I used the word "swarm" in the context of keeping recently installed bees from absconding You're correct that shortly before a swarm departs they engorge themselves on honey.  Tarranov (1955) found that only when swarm bees have their honey stomachs full do they forget their old location.  Thus, by extention, recently installed bees when fed upon installation forget their old location and stay with the queen.
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Cindi
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« Reply #18 on: October 18, 2009, 10:57:08 PM »

Kedgel, acknowledged, and have a most incredibly wonderful life, with that health. Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #19 on: November 11, 2009, 07:12:23 PM »

I agree with abeeco Smiley
Once JP told me what to do with an excluder, my caught bees usually stay now.

your friend,
john
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