Another GA Boy here

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by SourMash, Mar 7, 2017.

  1. SourMash

    SourMash New Member

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    I am completely new at this. I have two packages of bees on order but I won't receive them until May 12th. I thought I had a good game plan figured out but I got a call this weekend from a friend that is out of town and his bees swarmed. He asked if I wanted them and of course I jumped at the chance for free bees. This was my first time catching a swarm but all was successful and I brought them home. As luck would have it, he called again the next day with another swarm and of course I said sure. Now my problem is that one of my hives is in a temporary hive body (not painted, just grabbed the hive and went) and I really need to move them to a permanent hive. How would one go about this? Is it simply just moving the frames to the new hive or is there more to it?
     
  2. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    don't hurry. get a new hive body ready. I usually keep a swarm fairly closed in, maybe a section of queen excluder stapled over the front door, for a few days anyway. feed them and let them get settled in before you move them. get the new body ready, and when you do it, have a little table standing by. move frames in exact order into the new body, then lift the old box off and set the new one on the bottom board, taking care not to squish any bees. Brush bees from old box into new box

    I'd say about 7 to 10 days at least. They generally will not leave brood, so the queen has to start laying before the switch.
     

  3. SourMash

    SourMash New Member

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    Thanks Gypsi,
    next question; the frames that are in the hive are about 50/50 foundation and foundation less. I know I need to change out to all frames with foundation but I'm not sure about how often I should go in the hive. Is it ok to do it tomorrow? Or should I wait until I change out the hive body (assuming that the foundation less frames haven't been built up)? On that note, with plenty of feed and water, how long will it take them to build out the comb?
     
  4. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Try not to bother them much right now. If the box is a medium, or Illinois medium, you can leave it foundationless and the frames won't fall apart in a manual extractor. If it is a deep, not weather will break honeycomb if not supported by wires, 20 lb test fishing line strung through the holes on the frame, or foundation. But are the frames alternated between foundation and foundationless?

    How long it will take to build out comb depends not just on food supply but on bee count too, how big was the swarm? a big swarm with good food supply can fill a medium with comb in a week or 2. deep takes a couple of days longer. It isn't just the bees it is the age of the bees. Learn the stages - nurse bee - wax worker - forager.... those week old bees are the builders, a hive with only older bees won't build much until the brood hatches and is a week or so old.
    You shouldn't go in the hive for a couple of days, feed them via a hive top feeder if possible, if all you have is a boardman that hangs on the front you can use it, but be sure it doesn't leak and keep the front entrance small.

    Probably when you do go in you should have your other hive body ready for the switch, keep broodframes together in the center of the hive, and have frames with foundation ready to replace any foundationless they are not using. (alternatively have frames with a starter strip with wax on it and strung with wire or 20lb test to swap out for the totally empty.) Do it all at once, try not to injure any bees, if they have multiple broodnest frames together you can bet Mama is in the middle, move them gently swiftly and all together and do not try to do a full inspection of the brood. We want them to stay. Whatever they've done on those 2 or 3 frames will be fine for a while. Broodnest should be positioned in the new hive where it was in the old one.

    Has that got it?
     
  5. SourMash

    SourMash New Member

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    Thank you for your time Gypsi. I know it took a few minutes to type all of what has to be redundant info here but it was VERY helpful to me. Thanks again!!
     
  6. Gypsi2

    Gypsi2 New Member

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    Well I kinda lost in the forum switch over. How did you do with this SourMash?