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Author Topic: Going for another colony tomorrow...  (Read 858 times)
Intheswamp
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« on: October 23, 2012, 05:25:48 PM »

Well, the dairy barn colony appears to be doing well.  The goldenrod flow is about over, still got the little white asters and tarweed blooming.  And, we've got another colony to go get.

My mentor and I are going after it tomorrow.  This is an external colony that has set up housekeeping on a limb of a pecan tree that was blown down.  The property owner says the colony is within easy reach.  No electricity close by so this will be a "no-vac" removal.  I'm hoping that the limb will be small enough that we might can cut the limb and place the limb, comb, and bees in a box to overwinter and then do a cut out next spring and get them into frames.  If worse comes to worse...we cut comb and frame it up...ought to be interesting for this newbee!!!  shocked  Neither one of us has seen them yet so we're not really sure what to expect....no idea of size, attitude, or anything...we'll see, though. Smiley

Ed
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American blood spilled to protect the freedom and peace of people all over the world.  320,000 USA casualties in WWI, 1,076,000 USA casualties in WWII, 128,000 USA casualties in the Korean War, 211,000 casualties in the Vietnam "conflict", 57,000 USA casualties in "War on Terror".  Benghazi, Libya, 13 USA casualties. These figures don't include 70,000 MIA.  But, the leaders of one political party of the United States of America continue to make the statement..."What difference does it make?".

"We can't expect the American People to jump from Capitalism to Communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving them small doses of Socialism, until they awaken one day to find that they have Communism."..."The press is our chief ideological weapon." - Nikita Khrushchev
AllenF
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« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2012, 07:52:48 PM »

Take pics for us. 
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sawdstmakr
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« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2012, 08:52:32 PM »

I removed a open air colony like the one you described. Mine was a little bit bigger than a football and had been there from March to May of last year. It started out the size of a baseball. Be careful handling it and shaking it while you are cutting the limb and moving it. These bees were extremely gentle, thank God, because after cutting the limb on both sides of the hive, outer side first to remove weight, and getting it to the ground, it started falling apart. The first piece fell 2' to the ground. I told everyone to run expecting a major attack still holding the rest of the hive on the limb. I put it over the swarm bucket and a few minutes later another piece fell in the bucket. Again no reaction from the bees. It was very difficult to hold the comb while trying to cut it to fit in the frames.  It kept breaking in my hands because it was so new. Minimize the amount of vibration on the comb while you are cutting the branch. Support the comb from under neath it.
The queen did not survive, I never saw her, must have been lost in one of the drops (we look but could not find her in the grass) but her daughter, there were lots of eggs, is also very gentle. I can still go through that hive with no protection and no smoke. They hardly pay attention to being removed from the hive. They have 2 medium honey supers that I have not had a chance to remove yet.
Good luck.
Jim
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Intheswamp
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« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2012, 02:29:14 PM »

We got them with no problems.  A small, 3-comb plus a tag colony.  They were storing honey in the outside comb surfaces.  We cut the limb with a handsaw and used no smoke...these were some very gentle bees that didn't pay any attention to the vibration of the saw over a relatively long period of time.  I didn't get stung (veil and short sleeve shirt) nor did Mr. Nolen as for as I could tell.

I made a simple cradle with some cord.  I drove some nails into the outside of the top box and tied the cord to them.  I'll have to get a picture of the cradle and bees when I go back into them hopefully this weekend.  I forgot all about pictures until we'd cut the outer part of the limb off and then didn't think about them again until we were headed home.  Oh well, at least I remembered to get the bees!  grin

This shot shows the colony hanging below the limb before we finished cutting it loose.  You can see a light gold tint to the comb where they've been storing honey.  They've been working to get ready for winter.  The comb had a bright yellow tint to it that you can't really see in this picture.


This is a shot of Mr. Nolen after we cut the limb loose.  If you look closely you can see the yellow tint I spoke of....goldenrod! 


The GR flow is about over down here...it's turning brownish in most places but still there are patches of bright yellow every no and then.  Seems the shorter growing GR blooms later.  Tarweed is about three-fourths through it's flow and the little white asters are wide open still.  Bitterweed (ugh) is still blooming. 

It was 28 miles one-way so we left some stragglers...hopefully we did the colony good, though...it's supposed to get down below 40F next week so I don't know how they would have done.  I know they'll appreciate the feeding they'll get as I don't think they would've had enough to make it to spring with.  Anyhow, we got'em and they're on a hive stand now. Smiley

Ed
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American blood spilled to protect the freedom and peace of people all over the world.  320,000 USA casualties in WWI, 1,076,000 USA casualties in WWII, 128,000 USA casualties in the Korean War, 211,000 casualties in the Vietnam "conflict", 57,000 USA casualties in "War on Terror".  Benghazi, Libya, 13 USA casualties. These figures don't include 70,000 MIA.  But, the leaders of one political party of the United States of America continue to make the statement..."What difference does it make?".

"We can't expect the American People to jump from Capitalism to Communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving them small doses of Socialism, until they awaken one day to find that they have Communism."..."The press is our chief ideological weapon." - Nikita Khrushchev
AllenF
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« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2012, 06:09:55 PM »

Great pics.  Did you stick them in a hive or combine them with another hive?
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Intheswamp
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« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2012, 06:14:35 PM »

We put them in a box of their own still attached to the log.  I'd say about half bowling ball size.  I'm gonna put the sugar water to them and see what happens.  Last year in December I got a nuc from a friend with maybe this many bees in it.  It made it on through the winter and grew into a strong hive.  Hopefully this one will to and *maybe* I can do some swarm prevention this year and make some honey with them! Wink

Ed
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www.beeweather.com 
American blood spilled to protect the freedom and peace of people all over the world.  320,000 USA casualties in WWI, 1,076,000 USA casualties in WWII, 128,000 USA casualties in the Korean War, 211,000 casualties in the Vietnam "conflict", 57,000 USA casualties in "War on Terror".  Benghazi, Libya, 13 USA casualties. These figures don't include 70,000 MIA.  But, the leaders of one political party of the United States of America continue to make the statement..."What difference does it make?".

"We can't expect the American People to jump from Capitalism to Communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving them small doses of Socialism, until they awaken one day to find that they have Communism."..."The press is our chief ideological weapon." - Nikita Khrushchev
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