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Author Topic: Bucket Hives??  (Read 941 times)
RHBee
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« on: May 10, 2013, 05:13:07 AM »

I was approached by a couple wanting to build and populate a contraption called "bucket hives". I did some googleing just to find out if this system looked viable. It looks like a set it and forget it type of bee having. There is no provision for addressing any type of problem. I think this type of hive is simply a SHB and varroa breeding ground. Any experience out there with this stuff? I don't want to supply someone with bees if they are simply going to kill them.
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Ray
duck
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« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2013, 10:01:51 AM »

looks more like a swarm generator with a high chance of them having no bees next year.
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melliferal
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« Reply #2 on: May 10, 2013, 10:04:52 AM »

I think it's actually illegal in most if not all states to deliberately keep bees in a hive where they and their combs cannot be freely manipulated and inspected.  This applies to designed-immoveable hives like skeps, and even to, say, Langstroths that the bees have been allowed to glue and comb hopelessly together.  I'm not sure the nature of this "bucket hive"; but if it's skep-like in principle, it is most likely illegal and you should counsel them appropriately.
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iddee
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« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2013, 10:58:14 AM »

First, if they are in the US, it is illegal.

Second, if the bucket lets any light in through the plastic, they will most likely abscond.
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"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

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Beefunkrailroad
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« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2013, 11:29:40 AM »

Ive heard of people using hollowed out logs here in Kentucky, but I have never heard of bucket hives.
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D Coates
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« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2013, 12:13:11 PM »

If it's black plastic and get full sun there'll be comb melting too.
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TemeculaBeek
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« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2013, 03:36:15 PM »

Ive heard of people using hollowed out logs here in Kentucky, but I have never heard of bucket hives.
My understanding of hollowed out logs is that it's done horizontally, thus making it a top bar hive.

Bucket hive might be ok if it's built like a top bar, but then again unless the bucket is HUGE it would probably swarm ALL THE TIME.
just my newbie 2 cents
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D Coates
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« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2013, 05:29:48 PM »

My understanding of hollowed out logs is that it's done horizontally, thus making it a top bar hive.

Yes and no.  Hollowed out logs used to be use in the US. They were called "gums".  The were vertical with a few sticks going from one side to the other as bracing to reduce comb collapse.  I thought it was mostly done in the South but some of my older customers still ask me where I keep my gums.  It took a little bit, but now I understand exactly what they mean.
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alfred
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« Reply #8 on: May 10, 2013, 11:10:02 PM »

People often say that it is illegal to keep bees in one way or another.... "First, if they are in the US, it is illegal." Now I certainly agree that it is not a good idea. But where is this law...?

Alfred
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don2
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« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2013, 11:16:42 PM »

I think the law states it has to be a movable frame configuration.  Smiley d2
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melliferal
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« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2013, 11:17:58 PM »

My understanding of hollowed out logs is that it's done horizontally, thus making it a top bar hive.

Yes and no.  Hollowed out logs used to be use in the US. They were called "gums".  The were vertical with a few sticks going from one side to the other as bracing to reduce comb collapse.  I thought it was mostly done in the South but some of my older customers still ask me where I keep my gums.  It took a little bit, but now I understand exactly what they mean.

So that's what a gum is.  I'd heard the term but always assumed it was some southerny word for "skep".
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melliferal
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« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2013, 11:29:50 PM »

People often say that it is illegal to keep bees in one way or another.... "First, if they are in the US, it is illegal." Now I certainly agree that it is not a good idea. But where is this law...?

Alfred

It's a state thing. 

For instance, in Ohio it's reg 909.12:

No person shall keep or maintain bees in any hive if all frames and honeycombs cannot be readily removed therefrom for inspection or keep or maintain bees in any hive situated where adequate and efficient inspection is difficult, impracticable, or impossible. All cross-comb hives or domiciles for bees, from which the frames and honeycombs cannot be readily removed, are hereby declared to be a public nuisance.

If any owner is found using such cross-comb hives or domiciles, the director of agriculture shall notify said owner in writing to cease using them. If, after the expiration of one year from receipt of said notice, the owner has failed to cease using said cross-comb hives or domiciles for housing bees, the director may seize and destroy them without remuneration.
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iddee
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« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2013, 11:44:44 PM »

And the number and wording may vary from state to state, but the law is there in each state. Check with your state for details.

NO MOVABLE FRAMES, NO CAN KEEP.

And yes, a bee gum is a hollow log. The most available hollow trees in the south were gum trees, thus the name bee gums.
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"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

*Shel Silverstein*
RHBee
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« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2013, 03:24:58 PM »

Well I got to know these folks. Very nice people. They seem to really have a good attitude and desire to keep the girls properly. They got the information about the bucket hive from the internet. As I was getting to know them I explained how detrimental such a hive set up would be. No problems, that idea was not an option any more.
Any way they are picking up the colony tonight. I'm  going to hook them up with a pretty strong 5 frame nuc with a well established Italian queen. Nice and gentle bees, all the associated wooden ware down to a SHB bottom trap.  It feels good to be able to share this addiction with others who are eager to learn. Looks like we have another couple of good folks on the side of the bees.
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Ray
alfred
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« Reply #14 on: May 11, 2013, 06:52:11 PM »

Sure enough, I found the Colorado code:

" 8 CCR 1203-4 RULES AND REGULATIONS PERTAINING TO THE ADMINISTRATION AND ENFORCEMENT OF THE BEE AND BEE PRODUCTS ACT........

B.  All beekeepers shall provide movable frames for all hives which contain bees, and shall make provisions so the bees in such hives shall construct combs in the frames in such a way that these combs may be removed from the hives for inspection without injuring other combs in the hive.
  "

Interesting, didn't even know that we had any state level regulation. There is other stuff there about AFB and other disease control as well.

Alfred
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melliferal
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« Reply #15 on: May 11, 2013, 11:22:21 PM »

Well I got to know these folks. Very nice people. They seem to really have a good attitude and desire to keep the girls properly. They got the information about the bucket hive from the internet. As I was getting to know them I explained how detrimental such a hive set up would be. No problems, that idea was not an option any more.
Any way they are picking up the colony tonight. I'm  going to hook them up with a pretty strong 5 frame nuc with a well established Italian queen. Nice and gentle bees, all the associated wooden ware down to a SHB bottom trap.  It feels good to be able to share this addiction with others who are eager to learn. Looks like we have another couple of good folks on the side of the bees.

When you hand over the colony, make sure you stare at them strangely and chant "One of usss..." over and over again.  grin

Glad you were able to steer these folks in the right direction, hopefully they will be great beeks!
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capt44
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« Reply #16 on: May 11, 2013, 11:34:31 PM »

Gums are illegal in Arkansas too.
The hive has to have removable frames so they can be inspected.
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Richard Vardaman (capt44)
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