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Author Topic: Cutout - Owner sprayed bee killer  (Read 3087 times)
montauk170
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« on: June 30, 2010, 03:15:15 AM »

So my dad and I did a cutout today of a good sized colony, filled two mediums to the rim! I didn't have a third medium with me and wish I did. Anyways, more details on that later in the Bee Removal forum.

The owner tells me that she sprayed one can of a bee killing chemical bottle she bought at Home Depot. Those that you stand like 15 ft away, aim, and spray.
It might have been 1 month ago and she sprayed twice with the same can. She actually walked up near the hole at sunset and sprayed up the hole at the bees.

So now what? Do I need to get rid of all the bees? Do the bees carry the pesticide?
How about the honey I cutout today, should I discard the honey or it's ok to consume?

Please advice.
Thanks
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BjornBee
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« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2010, 07:21:26 AM »

Good questions.

But at least you got $300 dollars for your time, even if they are tainted with chemicals.  Wink

I've been there done that. I have shown up at locations after being called out to find piles of dead bees from a homeowner spraying the bees. They called me to "save" the bees as their first efforts failed.

I now ask the right questions, pass on anything with red flags, and realize that half of the extractions are a waste due to SHB infestation, previous poisoning, or other factors. If the homeowner is not willing to pay, I'll happily pass it on to another beekeeper far less concerned about taking money out of his families pocket or putting food on the table.

Here is an outline I stay away from.

1) Homeowner calls pesticide company. They quote a price of $500 dollars.

2) Homeowner realizes that 6 dollars in spray is a big savings.

3) Homeowner calls beekeeper (says nothing about the spray), and wants to "save" the bees for the goodness of the planet.

Here is the result.

1) Pesticide company loses nothing. They have no cost.

2) Homeowner spent 6 dollars.

3) Beekeeper spend half a day for tainted honey and a cluster contaminated.

That is why I prefer this.....

1) Pesticide company loses nothing.

2) The homeowner saves $200 by calling the beekeeper.

3) The beekeeper gets the colony and is paid for his effort and hardwork.


I would not be giving any of that honey to my kids..... Wink
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2010, 07:43:23 AM »

I never trust a cutout not to have been sprayed.  I assume they have... I never trust the honey and I never drive very far for "free bees" and I charge for cutouts...

My experience is that MOST have been sprayed and they won't tell you.  My first test is the sniff test.  I smell the entrance, and see if it smells like pesticide.
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JP
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« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2010, 08:56:46 AM »

Ask a million questions and if you are not satisfied with the answers tread cautiously. Don't consume the honey if there is any chance it is contaminated.

With that said, the typical home owner (who sprays) does exactly what yours did, can of wasp spray, which usually leaves no residual (ask to see the can if they have it and read the label)

Most people don't understand bees and believe that they just may be able to remove them with a quick spray. 99.99999% of the time, they wind up doing nothing of any significance to affect the colony.


...JP
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iddee
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« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2010, 09:09:33 AM »

1... If they say they haven't been sprayed, share the honey with them. That usually brings out the truth.

2...Place the hive in an outyard until they have gone through a brood cycle.

3...Charge enough that you would be well paid if the bees die. Poison isn't the main cause of losing a cutout hive. There are many more.
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« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2010, 09:31:51 AM »

ditto the above.  i have had the exact same thing happen.  when the whole truth cam out, they had called several other beekeepers and found out that no one would do the removal after the spraying.  that's why they didn't say anything about spraying when they called me!!
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montauk170
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« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2010, 01:10:35 PM »

You'll are great! Thanks for the tips.

The owner did want some honey but then I asked if it was sprayed and she might be tossing it after I left.
I'll be tossing the honey I collected, and yes, I charged $500 for the cutout. I'll post some details and pictures
in the other forum this afternoon when I find some time.

One brood cycle, approx. how long is that? And I assume within that time frame, I should toss all honey from the hive?

Thanks everyone!
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JP
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« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2010, 01:26:30 PM »

One brood cycle from when an egg is laid is three weeks.

You don't want to transfer a bunch of honey comb when doing a cut out. Transfer mostly brood. You could give them some honey, particularly honey that is around the edges of any brood comb sections, but I never, ever transfer an entire honey comb section. This could attract ants or other vermin while the bees are recovering from the stress of the cut out.

Some bees are more stressed by the ordeal than others.

Feed them or give them a honey frame from another hive after they are noticeably strong. Going into winter you could give them more frames of honey if need be.


...JP
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montauk170
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« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2010, 01:49:20 PM »

Thanks JP. Yeah, I asked that question last time when I had a mess and attracted tons of ants. Now I'm only transferring brood combs, and did that yesterday.
I must have framed like 4-5 medium frames with brood, eggs, and larvae.

So let's see... I have some brood combs in this new hive now.
Give them 3 wks for them to totally hatch and come out. The bees will have a lifespan of 5-7wks, I think.

So after say 10 wks I should be ok?
Discard any honey within that time frame.
Feed them syrup.
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JP
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« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2010, 01:55:43 PM »

You'll know pretty quickly if there are severe contamination issues. Bees are very sensitive to chemicals. If they appear strong and all looks well, leave things as they are. Don't consider consuming any questionable honey.


...JP
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oldenglish
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« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2010, 02:07:53 PM »

I am doing my first cutout this weekend, I know for a fact they have not been sprayed as these owners called me out earlier in the year for a possible swarm that we could not find (guess we know where they went) they are very much aware of the plight of bees and I think I feel worse about cutting into the brand new home than they do. I also told them that as this was my first cutout I would not charge them, its only 10 minutes from my house so no real travelling involved.
The main hardship is the attic gets really hot and due to my recent allergic reactions I am going to have to suit up, might actually sweat off some LBs.
Just to play it safe I am going to have my daughter do most of the work.
The owners have already lined up the original builder to come in and make repairs after I am finished.
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iddee
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« Reply #11 on: June 30, 2010, 02:47:15 PM »

oldenglish, have the owner set up a fan blowing out at the attic vent. Cover any other vents, open the hatch going from the house, and turn the fan on at 7 AM on cutout day. Draw the air conditioned house air into the attic. Start the cutout at 9 AM. That is early enough to be cool, but late enough for the foragers to be out. Use a timer and take a break every 20 to 30 minutes. You will not realize how hot you are until you take that break. You can easily overheat without knowing it if you stay in the same temp for longer than 30 minutes.
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montauk170
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« Reply #12 on: June 30, 2010, 04:13:14 PM »

Oh, the bees are doing great and looks really healthy. The spray according to the owner only killed what was outside at the time. The chemical never made it to the combs itself. That was about 1 month ago when she first sprayed.
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montauk170
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« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2010, 04:14:39 PM »

oldenglish - Isn't it rainy and cool in Washington right now?
I did the Wine barrel cutout in 85F direct sun, no shade, it was bad. Almost fainted.
Yesterday did a cutout, 70s but in shade all day, it was nice.
And I have the Mann Lake economy suit, that's the thick cotton suit.
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« Reply #14 on: June 30, 2010, 11:42:39 PM »

Sprayed or not sprayed, non of my cutouts retain the original brood, comb, etc. for more than necessary.  Once the brood hatch the comb gets destroyed.  I don't keep anything from someone else's home regardless of what they say.
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« Reply #15 on: July 01, 2010, 12:23:32 AM »

Wish I could rely on the weather forecast, they have just been terrible this year. Right now they are saying Sat will be 69 with morning clouds.
I am going to set up a fan but not sure it will make much of a difference, the house is not AC (this is WA).
Due to my recent allergic reaction I picked up a full bee suit today, I hate them, dont even like the jackets but kinda have no choice anymore. We are going to prep the attic on friday, hang up some plastic to keep the bees contained. Saturday I cannot do the cutout until after 4pm due to work. My kid is going to be helping and we will take it slow and drink plenty of fluids.
I have also been asked if I am interested in another cutout in a building that is scheduled to be demolished, gonna have to think about it as it is about an hour away from my place.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #16 on: July 01, 2010, 02:15:23 AM »

I love the idea of offering them the honey... nice lie detector there...
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montauk170
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« Reply #17 on: July 01, 2010, 03:46:31 AM »

Hope your attic cutout is not free. That's a lot of work. And yes, I've learned, take our sweet time during cutouts and take breaks often.
Bring a cooler with drinks! Water you can drink through the veil but soda and other sweeten drinks can be messy. Bring food too if you will
be working long hours up there.
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