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Author Topic: Bees under the hive on the bottom screen - normal?  (Read 2997 times)
McGoo
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« on: June 15, 2010, 11:08:59 AM »

There are quite a few bees who hang out under the hive. They are not making comb... maybe cleaning up?  Not sure?  There isn't any comb there.  Any ideas? huh
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JP
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« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2010, 03:37:32 PM »

This is normal.


...JP
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McGoo
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« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2010, 11:43:03 PM »

Thanks JP.  What are they doing there?   I dunno
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JP
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« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2010, 11:51:18 PM »

How long ago did you set up this hive? From a package? Nuc?


...JP
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tefer2
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« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2010, 08:00:20 AM »

   I also use screened bottom boards and have had new bees do that too.  I just smoke them off and close the bottom with slide in tray for a week. After a week of using the normal hive entrance only a hand full collect under screen. They are feeding themselves and not the hive when under box.
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McGoo
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« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2010, 08:56:43 AM »

Oh - thanks.  They are new bees.  I just set up about a month ago.... from a package.  So I should figure out a way to get them off there so that they go inside the hive.  Maybe tape some cardboard there for a week.  Sound like a good idea?
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JP
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« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2010, 12:35:47 PM »

Have you checked them at night? If they're all in at night, I wouldn't worry. How many bees are we speaking of here that are on the underside of the sbb?

Sbbs often confuse bees for a short while until they figure it all out.


...JP
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McGoo
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« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2010, 07:10:46 PM »

At least 100, if not more on the underside.  It has been 2 mos. 
If I leave them alone will they just eventually die off and the new brood will know where to go?
I don't like bothering with them if not truly necessary. 

I figure that I've got around 12 - 15K bees - so it is small potatoes.  What do you think?
Thanks
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DavesBees
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« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2010, 09:46:15 PM »

McGoo
I decided to leave my loose fitting bottom board on this summer.  I went to flip the board over since they get dirty from debris falling through the screen.  I dropped on end of the board and there were maybe 100 bees under there and the board was completely clean.  So I go to the next hive, same thing!  Now the bees in the basement are actually working and who am I to tell them they are only allowed to work upstairs.  This fall I’ll hold the board up closer and in the spring I’ll flip it and leave it loose enough so they can do their thing.  Perhaps working under the hive is punishment for them, or maybe even a reward.  Could it be a retirement community for the older bees, your bees may be blessed with extra compassion.  I can’t fly well any more but I can help clean house….. and so goes the live of the bees.
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McGoo
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« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2010, 10:40:05 AM »

Dave,
Yup... not sure why they're there... and I too had a few there when I moved the bottom board down for the spring.  Last night they grew in size and today back to a couple hundred. 

Whatever their reason(s) for being there, I am not going to tell them to move.  I don't think that they 'can't find' the entrance to the hive given that they typically travel miles and find food and report back on its whereabouts. 

Leaving well enough alone.  And ps.  They've been doing fine for 6 weeks and have built 11 combs and growing.  Something is working  Wink  and I think it's that I have left them alone.
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DavesBees
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« Reply #10 on: June 17, 2010, 11:07:30 AM »

Leaving well enough alone.  And ps.  They've been doing fine for 6 weeks and have built 11 combs and growing.  Something is working  Wink  and I think it's that I have left them alone.

Good for you and your bees too! 
While we could be making up stories all day; they may be trying to keep the low hanging brood warm.  Sure would be easier if they would leave little post-it notes around for us. 
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Dave - PM me if you are interseted in natural beekeeping in Hancock County Maine.
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