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Author Topic: Went to move three hives tonight...  (Read 2264 times)
ApalacheeRiverFarms
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« on: July 16, 2012, 11:55:40 PM »

A friend has several large cotton fields blooming near me so my plan was to move three hives tonight, one that I just robbed 8 medium frames from and has a shallow super that is close to being all capped. The second hive is a single deep with a medium super that is almost finished. The third (also pictured) is a late nuc I bought off someone and it's almost filled up the brood box. As you can see, I have a mess of bees hanging out. It wasn't overly hot today (East of Atlanta, GA) and we had a few showers this afternoon. All three have a large population as far as I can tell as a newbie (second year beek). it seems this behavior has just started the last few days. I didn't notice it a few weeks ago when it was 111 here. There is another cotton field about a mile away to the west through a pine forest. It may be starting to bloom... Just wondering if they might be thinking about swarming. I haven't been in the brood boxes lately because they seemed to be on some sort of nectar flow. Any ideas/advice?  I'm Jamie by the way and this is my first post here!  Thanks!

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BlueBee
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« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2012, 12:12:17 AM »

Bearding is pretty normal in the heat of the summer.  I only get worried about swarming when the number of bees bearding seems rather large for the size of the box they’re in.  I just had about 5 hives swarm in the past week because I didn’t get to them in time; they were bearding worse than yours.  I would at least take a peak under the hood and add more supers if they’re packed with bees inside too.

It’s tough to work the bees in this kind of heat.  Probably not good advice, but I would probably skip a full inspection

How are you going to move those hives with all the bees bearding like that?
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ApalacheeRiverFarms
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« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2012, 12:58:07 AM »

that's a good question.... One I meant to ask...  not sure how I'll move them. hopefully if I add supers and maybe a screened spacer on top to increase ventilation. I have a screened bottom board on one of the hives but it hasn't seemed to make a difference.
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iddee
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« Reply #3 on: July 17, 2012, 09:05:13 AM »

""A friend has several large cotton fields blooming near me ""

How near? If within 2 mile, moving is a waste of time. The bees will be working there anyway.

If farther away, smoke them lightly before moving. They will all go inside.
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ApalacheeRiverFarms
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« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2012, 09:10:47 AM »

The field in full bloom is six miles. I also want to change the location of my apiary on my 150 acre farm so a trip to the cotton field will make that possible when I move them back.
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ApalacheeRiverFarms
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« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2012, 09:28:50 AM »

It also seems the closer to a nectar source, the more efficient they'll pack it in!  anything to help the girls!
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bernsad
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« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2012, 06:45:57 PM »

Probably because they expend less getting there and back, there will be more to store.
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AllenF
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« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2012, 07:09:17 PM »

Smoke will drive bees into a hive, even at night. 
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Joe D
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« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2012, 07:25:34 PM »

The way I read your post, your supers are all most full and your going to move them to a new flow source.  You will need more room in the supers.  On the SBB, all my hives but 2 have them, those 2 beard alot more than the hives that do.  Good luck with your bees.



Joe
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ApalacheeRiverFarms
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« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2012, 09:07:05 PM »

This first field I'm moving to is 38 acres. they have 850 total planted within 10 miles or so. Hive one is a single deep, a med deep with two partial frames and 8 empties I spatula/strained (no extractor yet) and on top of that is a shallow comb super that the upper half is capped and the bottom half of the frames uncapped. This super was on bottom when I harvested so they may even been eating that honey because I'm not sure anything is flowing in their range. second hive is a single with a medium that's only have drawn out ad filled (plastic foundation and I had a queen excluder...)  didn't realize that was a no no. Third hive is a nuc that was put in a deep not that log ago and hasn't drawn all the deep frames out. I just put a med super on it with plastic foundation. I don't like the idea of two deeps because I'd like to more easily be able to move them. I'd be happy if I could take 100 lbs more honey this year but my main goal is to increase my hive numbers as quickly and cheaply as possible.   Any advice?  They're moving tonight!

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tryintolearn
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« Reply #10 on: July 18, 2012, 02:30:57 AM »

were just coming out of a dearth here in sc and the cotton is the main bloom here at my place...but oh what a difference a day makes you could just see them take off..had been having to feed them for several weeks...suddenly the intake dramatically decreased and then i spotted the cotton blooms and i guess this time i figured it out...its a great thing to see them happy
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Finski
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« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2012, 05:38:21 AM »

.
Firts, are they swarming? Forum is wrong placeto ask that. Only right way is look the brood box.

You have 3 boxes and one box has capped honey.

It is surely tight inside. If bees make one capped box, they need 2 other boxes where they rippen the honey.  bees must slow down working if they have not proper place where to put honey.

Brood needs 2 boxes. They store pollen near brood.

It seems that you ogt to put 2-3 boxes more to the hives.

- Give foundations. They draw combs well in good flow.
- look queen cells. If they have queen cells, make at once false swarms.
- move all honey frame up and put in lower box foundations.
- put allways exctracted box and foundationds between honey and brood.

.



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asprince
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« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2012, 07:21:17 AM »

Be careful on cotton......know your farmer. Yesterday I saw a huge field of cotton being sprayed by an airplane. I lost 20 hives a few years ago that were half mile from cotton. The foraging bees were out and brought the spray back. It was not a pretty sight.


Steve
 
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ApalacheeRiverFarms
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« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2012, 09:10:29 AM »

I'm good friends with the farmer. They haven't sprayed for insects in years. They put down a preemergent herbicide before planting but that's it.

 Keith Delaplane (sp?) from UGA suggests a single deep brood box and a med super for their honey storage instead of two deep supers. Easier on the back for sure. I've considered trying a few hives next year in two deep 8 frame boxes. I think that might be the happy medium for me.
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Sour Kraut
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« Reply #14 on: July 18, 2012, 05:18:02 PM »

"Keith Delaplane (sp?) from UGA suggests a single deep brood box and a med super for their honey storage instead of two deep supers."

With all due respect to Mr. Deleplane, I think that is way too little room for a good colony

I'd do you move, then pile 3-4 mediums on each colony and let them go at it........drawn comb if possible.
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tryintolearn
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« Reply #15 on: July 22, 2012, 09:42:23 AM »

steve,   i went out yesterday to my only hive and saw about a houndred dead bees in front on ground and also some on the landing board... rode to the cotton field that's about a mile from me and saw the tractor doing its thing....toady all seemed well inside the hive...i feel sure the foragers were bringing it back...I'm not taking any honey from them this fall though...letting them finish building out the second deep ... hopefully they will survive it
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asprince
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« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2012, 10:53:25 AM »

tryintolearn, A hundred or so bees won't severely injure a strong hive. Keep in mind that the farmer may have to spray again. You might want to talk to him. If he sprays late in the evening your losses will be minimized.


Good Luck,

Steve 
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tryintolearn
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« Reply #17 on: July 23, 2012, 08:29:00 AM »

steve, after posting yesterday morn...i went out to hive and saw the bees bringing some dead larvae out not many but did see that....wondering if the workers feed the larvae b4 they expired carrying the chemicals....could they have feed my queen straight from the field?  this is nerve racking
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sawdstmakr
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« Reply #18 on: July 23, 2012, 11:18:08 AM »

Young house bee feed the Q, not field bees. The house bees return with nectar and give it to the house bees who place it into cells to reduce the water content. I don't know at what point they will start using it for food but it didn't go directly to the Q.
Jim
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asprince
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« Reply #19 on: July 23, 2012, 05:53:04 PM »

You may continue to see residual effects. If he does not spray again you should be ok.


Good Luck,

Steve
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tryintolearn
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« Reply #20 on: July 24, 2012, 01:31:11 PM »

many many thanks guys
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ApalacheeRiverFarms
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« Reply #21 on: July 24, 2012, 02:16:56 PM »

I wonder what's the difference... My cotton grower never has to spray after it blooms and it does fine.
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