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Author Topic: Wasps!  (Read 1382 times)

Online Nyleve

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Wasps!
« on: October 06, 2012, 11:47:01 AM »
Ok - my fault, probably. I put an extracted honey super out for the bees to clean but what happened is that the wasps found it and now they've found the hive too. I obviously didn't put the super far enough away from the hive - I realize this now. So there's this big war going on and I'm trying to figure out how to minimize the damage. This morning I went and put duct tape over the upper entrance to the hive and reduced the main downstairs entrance to about 2 or 3 inches. There was also a small hole in a corner of one of the boxes which I also closed with tape. Is there anything else I can do? Very upset - my bees have been doing so well.

Offline Hemlock

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Re: Wasps!
« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2012, 01:01:07 PM »
Reduce the entrance down to the size of a single honeybee.  It'll be too small for the wasps and the bees can defend better.

Offline annette

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Re: Wasps!
« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2012, 06:39:10 PM »
I'm with hemlock on this one. Make the hole very small. Also placing a dripping wet sheet over the hives that covers them down to the ground will keep the robbers out. If you have a robbing screen, use that as well.  This is all I ever do.

Annette

Offline AllenF

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Re: Wasps!
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2012, 07:48:41 PM »
I reduce the entrance down to near zero.   Small enough for the bees to defend.   Any time you place supers out the be cleaned up or robbed out, the bee frenzy is natural and amazing.   I love the madness, just sit in there and enjoy the party.   

Offline BlueBee

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Re: Wasps!
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2012, 11:28:31 PM »
We're dipping below freezing tonight.  Ontario can't be far behind!  The freezing temps will take care of the wasps sooner or later. 

It is amazing how cold the yellow jackets will take to flight.  I went out to kill a big nest just after dawn a week ago when the temps were down near freezing and the buggers were already up and flying.  Not all of them, but enough to come after me.  I had yellow jackets move into one of my insulated nucs!  Evidently they like the insulated hive too. :(

Online Nyleve

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Re: Wasps!
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2012, 07:01:44 PM »
Well I went out and had a look this afternoon. Reduced the opening to about 1/2" and made sure any other openings were closed up tight. There are still quite a few wasps around the hive, but they don't seem to be getting inside much that I can see. And yes, it's getting pretty cold here. We had our first really hard frost last night. Seems to be slowing down the yellowjackets but not completely stopping them. Do they overwinter or will they be gone by spring?


Offline BlueBee

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Re: Wasps!
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2012, 07:31:59 AM »
I am under the impression that only yellow jacket queens survive a Michigan winter; I would assume the same applies in Ontario.  I know for sure that above ground yellow jackets can’t survive 0F in my freezer!  Somewhere between 0F and 32F they croak. 

I do wonder about the ground dwelling yellow jackets.  They don’t live that deep underground, but I’m not sure it gets down to 0F a foot underground here.  However since yellow jackets don’t store a lot of nectar, they really don’t have the food supply to survive winter even if they are underground. 

Online Nyleve

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Re: Wasps!
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2012, 10:52:14 AM »
Glad to hear the yellowjackets are unlikely to survive. We seem to have an unusually large number of them this year - in part because they've been chumming around with my bees but they also took over my hummingbird feeders to the point that I had to remove them. Hopefully by spring any remaining ones will have forgotten all about the hive and we can start from square one again.

Offline greenbtree

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Re: Wasps!
« Reply #8 on: October 11, 2012, 09:47:17 AM »
Yellowjackets won't survive until Spring where you are.  By now they have thrown off their queens for next year.  I swear they get more aggressive and annoying after that.  Maybe they have nothing to lose.  This is the time of year I get a BUNCH of "I have bees in my wall!" calls.  I have explained the bee/yellowjacket identification thing and the yellowjacket life cycle about a million (O.K., I exaggerate a bit.) times by now.  They ones in the ground often get dug up and eaten by skunks this time of year.

JC
"Rise again, rise again - though your heart it be broken, or life about to end.  No matter what you've lost, be it a home, a love, a friend, like the Mary Ellen Carter rise again!"

Online Nyleve

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Re: Wasps!
« Reply #9 on: October 11, 2012, 01:07:50 PM »
You go, skunks!