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Author Topic: Need advice on removing bees from metal column  (Read 3705 times)
annette
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« on: July 16, 2010, 03:55:11 PM »

I work at a hospital and today a patient came in and said there were bees in the parking lot. Since the people in my office know I am a beekeeper they came and got me.  Well this is the scenario.

The bees are in a metal column that hold up their solar panels. The column is about 12 feet high and the bees are going in and out at the very top. I took some photos, but can't post them until I get home (I am still at work right now).

The maintenance man at the facility is understanding on the importance of the bees and doesn't want to kill them, so he is giving me a chance to get them out.

They cannot be cut out (metal column). I am sure they must have recently arrived or else someone else would have complained.

The problem with doing a trap out is:

I cannot set up scaffolding in this patient care area. Someone could kick it over. If too many patients start to complain they will have to kill them asap. Since this is a hospital, there are always liability issues.

So I had the thought to perhaps try and smoke them out since I believe they are a new arrival. What do you all think about this?? I remember a post here about a beek who did just that?? Would it work?? Can you tell me how I would do this, if you think this would work. What time of day to do this? How to seal up the entrance if I see a mass exodus?

They are basically giving me the weekend to figure things out.

Thanks for any suggestions
Annette
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gardeningfireman
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« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2010, 04:45:14 PM »

That's a tough one  Undecided! JP should know what to do; after all, he is the bee-whisperer Smiley!! You might end up having to sacrifice this colony to fate. Good luck with it! Whatever happens, I'm sure the BeeGod will still smile upon you and your parasol!
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annette
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« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2010, 06:18:37 PM »

That's a tough one  Undecided! JP should know what to do; after all, he is the bee-whisperer Smiley!! You might end up having to sacrifice this colony to fate. Good luck with it! Whatever happens, I'm sure the BeeGod will still smile upon you and your parasol!

Thanks because I have started to feel sad for this hive.
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iddee
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« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2010, 07:57:19 PM »

Bee quick or bee go applied liberally should run them out if they don't have brood yet. Smoke probably won't work for a number of reasons.

Getting it below them in sufficient quantity for a long period.
Fire on the hospital grounds.
Electrical wires possibly in the post.
Smoke in an area the patients can smell it.
Just to name a few.
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« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2010, 08:58:18 PM »

Annette, Im still learning about beekeeping as this is my first year. I have how ever installed many of these metal poles. Seeing the way bees act when bee go is used I would check the base of the pull for a hand hole (a cover with a couple of bolts at the base of the pole). If it has one you could always apply a large amout so a rag or paper towel and stick in the hand hole. That would force the bees up and out the the pole. After that I'm not sure what you could do but It would be better then other ways the problem might have to be delt with. Good luck and keep us posted.
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kathyp
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« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2010, 09:13:06 PM »

that removal i did the other day was from a colony that had only been in that space for 1 week.  granted, it must have been a  big swarm.  i was estimating around 5 pounds or so.
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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 #6 on: July 16, 2010, 09:32:55 PM »


   I would use Bee quick the smell of bee go in an area the patients can smell it.



                BEE HAPPY Jim 134 Smiley
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JP
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« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2010, 10:48:11 PM »

I'm with Iddee Annette. This is what I would do, a forced trap out.

Apply a liberal amount of bee quick underneath to run them out. You may need to use a shop vac with the hose in the exhaust port and blow the bee quick (on a rag over the hose) up from the bottom.

You will need to have a catch box ready with open brood cells and eggs/very young larvae so the bees can flock to the set up.

I have never successfully "smoked" bees out of any void space and had the queen leave.

Do all this in one shot, secure the premises, do the deal, be very aggressive in your approach as you want them boiling out and going to the catch box.

Now here lies the rub.

After you have run a good many out, you will need to seal the column.

This is not an easy or fun job, it could go better than you think but perhaps worse than you think, especially if there is brood inside the column. Bees tend to not leave their own brood without a serious, serious push.

Your best bet is if they have been there less than five days but if not...


...JP
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annette
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« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2010, 10:49:22 PM »

Here are the photos:








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JP
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« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2010, 10:56:42 PM »

After looking at your pictures I have another idea, now don't laugh y'all, but what if you used a torch and heated the metal support below the bees to run them out?

This would work but you'd need to be sure you wouldn't be ruining anything heat sensitive inside the support.

And the paint may ruin as well so they will most likely need to re paint.

I would try bee quick and heat, I think this could work, oh and also a catch box with open brood as I mentioned and a honey frame.


...JP
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annette
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« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2010, 11:08:17 PM »

I appreciate all the replies, but I am feeling like this is beyond my abilities.

The maintenance guy who is giving me the time to do this, is actually doing so secretly. The hospital would never allow anything like this. I cannot destroy any hospital property using the heat and also it could start a fire you never know.

I think firstly I will get the bee quick tomorrow and try to look around for another entrance where I can either blow it in or spray it in. I did not see any today, but I will look again tomorrow.

JP I will call you tomorrow to discuss this further OK??

I am feeling overwhelmed right now.

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JP
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« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2010, 11:21:43 PM »

Don't feel overwhelmed!

Call me anytime!


...JP

Bobby McFerrin - Don't Worry Be Happy
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kathyp
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« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2010, 10:07:10 AM »

 grin  funny JP. 

deep breath, annette!   Wink
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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
annette
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« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2010, 11:12:04 PM »

OH that was so, so funny JP. It took me a while to realize that was Robin Williams in that. I just loved that video.  So I took his advice and called JP and now I am Happy, Happy, grin grin grin
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jhs494
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« Reply #14 on: July 20, 2010, 10:24:58 PM »

I wonder if drumming slowly on the outside of the metal column would help bring them out? Along with the bee quick. Just a thought.
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Joe S.
annette
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« Reply #15 on: July 20, 2010, 10:36:37 PM »

I wonder if drumming slowly on the outside of the metal column would help bring them out? Along with the bee quick. Just a thought.


I have been over and over this situation with several beekeepers including JP. I spoke with the maintenance guy at the hospital and the options are so, so limited.

They will not let me set up a catch box
They will not let me drill any holes in the metal column
They will not let me have any time to figure out something else.
I cannot do anything that would destroy hospital property
The bees are flying all over the place and patients are walking by that walkway all day long.
Even though the drumming would disturb them I don't believe they would leave the brood for any period of time.  It might even piss them off if they have to run out because of it.  But I believe they would go right back in. The bee quick from what I am reading is only good if you get up behind them or beneath them, but still have to have a catch box when they run out. (from JP)

I am done with this hive. They plan on exterminating them.

 But something very funny happened today. The hospital called Orkin Pest Control to remove the bees and somehow Orkin gave them my phone number. I don't know how Orkin got my phone number "They asked me if this was "El Dorado Swarm" Maybe they got my number off the beemaster bee removal map. 

They are having trouble finding someone to even exterminate them.
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kathyp
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« Reply #16 on: July 20, 2010, 11:47:43 PM »

annette, i am getting calls from pest control people also.  i have no idea where they got my name.  probably the same place as the PD.  the pest control folks don't want to kill the bees even for money.

sometimes extermination is the only option.  it sucks but there it is.
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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
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« Reply #17 on: July 21, 2010, 12:26:31 AM »

I rather like this particular wrinkle in the fabric of the bee-peoples' universe!
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« Reply #18 on: July 21, 2010, 12:38:44 AM »

would it be reasonable to use a bee vac (even though you most likely won't get the queen) and maybe put the bees into a new hive before the stragglers are exterminated?
(also, I heard that Bobby McFerrin had killed himself: SNOPES says that's a nasty rumor - McFerrin is alive and kicking)
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« Reply #19 on: July 21, 2010, 06:59:12 AM »

Very nice circle of events. At least the exterminator is willing to give someone a chance first, before spraying.
I guess sometimes you must let some go, and it appears you have exhausted your options.


Better luck on the next one!

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Joe S.
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« Reply #20 on: July 21, 2010, 07:34:56 AM »

They are having trouble finding someone to even exterminate them.




                    LOL



                     BEE HAPPY Jim 134 Smiley
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« Reply #21 on: July 24, 2010, 12:35:40 PM »

So how did this all work out?
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annette
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« Reply #22 on: July 25, 2010, 12:20:07 AM »

The bees were exterminated 2 nights ago Cry
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« Reply #23 on: July 25, 2010, 01:03:43 AM »

Sorry to hear that.  At least you gave it your best effort.
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« Reply #24 on: July 25, 2010, 01:14:45 AM »

I'm sorry it turned out this way.  Sorry the hospital was so protective of their architecture.

You really tried to help.
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« Reply #25 on: July 25, 2010, 02:50:44 AM »

That's ashame Annette. Dealing w/ larger org's is a hassel to have the bee's rescued. Usually they call the pesticide person.

I also was hoping to rescue the Manhole bees but the city had their person sent out. I fortuitously came by the day the pesticide guy was there but when I rushed back w/ my nuc box he had already opened man hole & sheared off the comb which dropped into sewer. He then used pyrethrin spray to do in the workers. This guy wanted my number but he said this 2010 he had gotten the most calls for bee eradications. Never recieved any calls from him as all the $$$ he's been making killing bees I'm sure he never wanted to give up. I tried & at least you tried & we will keep on trying to rescue & relocate bees. Heres a link to my encounter w/ the manhole bees, never forget your pics & adventure as will be better prepared for the next rescue/ relocation  cheer

Manhole Bees RIP


David S
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« Reply #26 on: July 25, 2010, 09:30:17 AM »

any organization that deals with the public is twitchy about liability.  they have to be, because people sue them at the drop of a hat.  if you had to make the choice between bee and multi-million dollar law suites, which would you choose.

while i would rather see the bees saved, i do not blame the companies for this choice.
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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
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