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Author Topic: Trap out or removal question ????  (Read 1050 times)

Offline Boom Buzz

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Trap out or removal question ????
« on: June 20, 2011, 04:49:55 PM »
A home owner contacted me with a bee colony in his retaining wall.  I would not think there is much space for them to build comb in this situation.  The only way I know to get to the bees is to dig down to them.  But not knowing the space they are in, I would think digging would possibly cave in the space and make a mess of the comb and possibly bury half the bees with it.

I was thinking maybe a trap out would work better.  It would be fairly easy to set up.

In the picture below the bees are coming and going through the dark gap near the bottom just left of center.



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Any thoughts or opinions?  OR anybody have experience with digging for bees?
Thanks for any help...

John




Offline AllenF

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Re: Trap out or removal question ????
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2011, 09:37:49 PM »
Digging for bees, that's funny.   I like it.   So are you sure they are honey bees?   Just had to ask.  If you can not cut them out, I would trap them out.   

Offline G3farms

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Re: Trap out or removal question ????
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2011, 09:49:31 PM »
Looks like a good place for yellow jackets to me. Have you actually seen that they are honeybees?? Did you take the pic or the home owner? I am betting the home owner.
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Offline David McLeod

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Re: Trap out or removal question ????
« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2011, 10:06:49 PM »
Are you sure they are honeybees? That looks a lot more like a typical yellow jacket presentation. That said I have observed honeybees in the ground on two occasions. Once under a sweet gum tree and the other under an old lighter stump (old growth long leaf pine) that was on the very edge of a wash (gully or ravine), that one even had exposed comb where the bank of the wash had fallen away from the tap root.
If that one is honeybees I would lean toward a trap out but since it looks to he only a couple ties down digging would be very tempting. If so I would carefully probe to determine cavity size and location then try to excavate to the side of the cavity. I would think a carefully dug and shored hole to the side would let you enter the cavity from the side rather than the top to avoid collapse of the cavity.
Another area to explore is the butt ends of the ties. I often see them rot out on the interior starting at the butt ends. If that is the case a standard cut out may be the deal. A drill and a eighth inch bit will tell you if that is the case.  
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Offline David McLeod

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Re: Trap out or removal question ????
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2011, 10:15:30 PM »
BTW, if it is yellowjackets your still good if you want to go for it. Just use your shop vac (you can sprinkle a little pesticide dust into the vac beforehand or offsite if need be just not on site for a fee) at full power to depopulate the nest then go in and remove the carton nest. Mechanical stinging insect removal does not require licensing in most areas.
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Offline iddee

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Re: Trap out or removal question ????
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2011, 10:39:41 PM »
I would look at removing the beam on bottom left, if, indeed, they are honeybees. I doubt they extend into the dirt area. My guess would be they are in the beam.
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Offline David McLeod

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Re: Trap out or removal question ????
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2011, 11:04:41 PM »
A word of caution. AHB is reported to be prone to ground nesting. Not sure if they've made to your area but you might want to take their temperature before you get to deep into it. I've made that SOP in my work.
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Offline Boom Buzz

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Re: Trap out or removal question ????
« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2011, 11:20:19 PM »
Hey all, many thanks for the replies and ideas.  I should have mentioned that I personally went over and took a look and they are definitely honey bees.  My first thought from the phone call was it is YJs but since it was close I thought I would take a look.  And just looking for about five minutes I got popped on the forehead.  I wish I had a mini cam to see inside and try to figure out how big is the cavity and where it is.  

Unless there is some void/cavity behind the railroad ties I just can't imagine the colony being very big.  I am leaning toward a trap out for the experience and because I don't want to dig and demolish the colony by accident.  Plus I have an aversion to digging  :-D.

John
« Last Edit: June 20, 2011, 11:57:47 PM by holdthematers »

Online kathyp

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Re: Trap out or removal question ????
« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2011, 12:49:17 AM »
Quote
And just looking for about five minutes I got popped on the forehead.


that's not a good sign.
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anything