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Author Topic: Swarm moved in, when to cutout?  (Read 1514 times)
montauk170
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« on: May 30, 2010, 01:13:53 AM »

Hey everyone, been a lurker for a short period and new to beekeeping. Drove up to Mann Lake and bought all my bee supplies just this past Friday after I got three calls from friends/coworkers telling me that there are swarms in their yards. Well, it rained two days last week and all three swarms have left before I was able to buy my supplies. BUT I got lucky today. I went over to my sister's house and found that a swarm moved into her under-decking, where another beek removed a more mature hive just 2 years ago and torched the wood to remove any bee wax, etc in hopes no more bees would come.

Anyways, a swarm have moved in, probably been 2-3 wks max. I see some new combs through the cracks. I was thinking of waiting for the bees to settle in first, build more combs, and hopefully have some eggs/young brood, before I do the cutout. When should I attempt a cutout if the bees moved in about 2-3wks ago?

Will take videos for sure but nothing pro like JP and some others on here has posted on.

Thanks!
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iddee
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« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2010, 07:20:58 AM »

They should have brood 1 week after moving in, so start cutting. The sooner you get them, the easier the job is going to be.
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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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JP
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« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2010, 08:55:17 AM »

Unless someone actually saw the swarm move in, you don't know for certain how long they've been there. So, as Iddee mentioned, its time to get to it.

BTW, I've tried just about everything to remove evidence (contents, comb/propolis) from a hive, some of which included pressure washing and yes, even a heat gun (which probably embeds wax even deeper into the wood). I believe sandblasting might work but is not feasible in almost all examples.

Bee proofing is the only way to keep swarms from reestablishing, their sense of smell is beyond our comprehension.


...JP
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montauk170
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« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2010, 02:50:55 PM »

Cool, will start cutting tomorrow.

JP - do you catch more bees than fish?  Smiley
I'm really into fishing - freshwater/salt.
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JP
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« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2010, 05:01:31 PM »

Cool, will start cutting tomorrow.

JP - do you catch more bees than fish?  Smiley
I'm really into fishing - freshwater/salt.

If I caught as many fish as I did bees I would need many freezers.  grin

With this oil spill our fishing will not be the same for some time to come.  Cry



...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
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montauk170
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« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2010, 12:53:52 AM »

Oh yeah, I wouldn't be eating any of the fish out of there right now. That oil spill must have ruined the fishery down there!
Time to do some freshwater fishing instead!
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iddee
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« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2010, 08:52:06 AM »

A whole new meaning to fish oil.
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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"

*Shel Silverstein*
JP
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« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2010, 09:26:02 AM »

a whole new meaning to fish oil.

You know that just ain't right Iddee!


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

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iddee
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« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2010, 09:45:51 AM »

When you can't do anything else, it's better to laugh than cry, JP.

It's a bad situation that isn't going to get better for a long time. I feel for you folks.
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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"

*Shel Silverstein*
montauk170
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« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2010, 07:09:27 PM »

Well, attempted the cutout with my father. It was just unscrewing two 2x5's on the under-decking. The bees were fine when removing that part.
Where we were standing was the end of another level or deck, and it was on the edge. Could fall pretty far down since it's on a slope/hill.
So it did make it hard to get to the hive.

Anyways, didn't have a bee vac (making one today!!!). So brushed the bees away slowly to access the first outside comb which didn't have anything but
a few pollen in a couple of combs. Bees were on that first comb and flew off fast as I tried to rubber band it to a frame.
As I got in closer to the entrance/center there were white combs with brood/eggs/etc. Those made it heavy and the comb would collapse when I held it.
Was not fun. First one dropped over on my hand and the bees where flying everywhere!!!! That got them going. Then later I was cutting the side of the very
center comb that was filled with brood. Didn't know it was so heavy and it dropped to the ground like 2 stories down!!!! I couldn't believe it! I just killed tons of
babies and perhaps the queen if it was stuck on that comb. Like a few minutes after that comb dropped to death, my parents see a swarm of bees fly away.
I believe that was the queen and it's followers leaving the hive I was cutting out. Oh man!!!!

So I framed a few combs with brood and honey and put it into a medium. Put that hive right by the entrance of the cutout hive hoping the brood and honey would
draw the workers in and maybe they will craft a new queen?

Today I went to check it, tons of ants crawling inside the hive!!! What should I do? Stop the ants? Just get rid of the hive/honey/brood/combs?

Also, it's hard to walk out on the deck now. The bees are angry! Some will come check you out immediately, hovering near you, and seem to be in attack mode!

Now, I don't know what I should do. A cutout gone bad. Hive with bees and no queen, there are still some combs in the cutout and I am sure some brood. Will they rebuild?
Leave? I don't know... Any suggested what I should do next?
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montauk170
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« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2010, 08:39:29 PM »

Here's a pic....

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kathyp
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« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2010, 09:05:17 PM »

hmmmm

i think i'd take what brood you could get into frames and add it to your swarm you picked up the other day. the only brood that will probably make it is the capped brood without nurse bees to have tended it.  the rest, i'd just toss.  if there is any honey that you can crush out of the comb, you can feed that back to the other hive....or i put scrap comb on a tarp away from my hives and let the bees clean it out.  don't put it right by the hives. 

the space needs to be scraped out, washed out, and then closed up tight.

maybe someone else has a better idea.....

do recheck that space for the queen.  if you see that lots of bees have returned, she may yet be in there.
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montauk170
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« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2010, 12:43:26 AM »

MAYBE the queen is there as I still see tons of bees around, at least flying around on the outside, and those flying at anyone who walks by, even checks people out through windows! I will let the chaos I created calm down some before I suit back up and take a closer look.
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