Guidance for moving the hive box?

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by bobwheel, Apr 3, 2015.

  1. bobwheel

    bobwheel New Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    We had an empty nuc box in the yard from a friend and a colony of bees moved in on their own about 6 weeks ago. We transferred them to a 10 frame box 2 weeks ago. Now we've found they're too close to our lawn and they go berserk when we're gardening. How do you suggest we move the hive? - It needs to be relocated about 15 yards away from its current location. We're brand new at this and don't won't to lose our new friends. Help?
     
  2. camero7

    camero7 Member

    Messages:
    715
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Move it a yard at a time every 3-4 days. Or move it where you want it at night and put some brush or grass in front of the entrance and make the bees relocate from there. You might lose a few foragers with either method but it won't hurt the hive.
     

  3. Zookeep

    Zookeep Active Member

    Messages:
    1,252
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    or you could move the hive to your friends place for a week (the 1 where the nuc came from) then back to the spot you want it
     
  4. bobwheel

    bobwheel New Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Well, the empty nuc box was in our yard for 6 months after the last colony (which was given to us from someone who lived appx. 40 miles away) swarmed and left us suddenly. We hadn't secured it properly to a base when it was upturned by a possom one night. So we were planning to buy a new colony this spring when lo and behold, a new hive just moved in on their own! So, we're nervous about losing this little blessing. If we choose to move them at night, should we still smoke the hive and maybe cover it while we make the transfer? Then would we put grass and such at the entrance more as a blockade for them to work their way out of, or as a means of visual landmarks so the know what to look for when they leave and return again to the hive?
     
  5. Ray

    Ray Member

    Messages:
    582
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Bees do NOT like to be messed with at night. If your are going to move them at night, the very first thing is to plug all the opening. The bees need oxygen so don't plug them too tight. You are only moving them 15 feet, any confused bees should find the new place fine.
     
  6. Guba

    Guba New Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    When I moved my bee's, I moved them about 75 feet. I blocked the entrance with a wooden plug at night when all the bee's were inside. The next day I moved the hive and after a couple of hours went by and the bee's were a little more calm I removed the wood plug. In retrospect, I think I may have removed the plug too soon. The bee's still remembered to go back to the where the hive used to be. I don't know how many bee's I lost because of this, but I can't help but wonder if maybe I should have had the entrance blocked for another day or two.
     
  7. bobwheel

    bobwheel New Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    After getting fully suited (live & learn) and running the smoker, we attached a small tree branch to the front of the box, covering a portion of the entrance, then moved it in the evening about 10 feet. We watched a few dozen buzz around the old location the next day and lost maybe 50 this way. Overall, fairly successful. But need to do this again a few more times to get it where it needs to be. They HATE the lawnmower and tend to attack when it's nearby... Poor gardener got about 5 in the face today and we feel so bad!!!
     
  8. bobwheel

    bobwheel New Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
  9. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    2,808
    Likes Received:
    12
    Trophy Points:
    38
    When I move a hive, I put an empty nuc or other shelter at the old site, and do the move all at once, and hang something in front of the entrance to tell them to re-orient. I move it at night or just before dawn and tack screening over the entrance during the move. I do not use a lawn mower. Wheelbarrow occasionally, and I am fully suited. I have learned to ducttape glove/sleeve meeting point when doing this.
     
  10. bobwheel

    bobwheel New Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks Gypsi! When you used your empty box to catch the stragglers, how did you ultimately get them back with their colony?
     
  11. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    2,808
    Likes Received:
    12
    Trophy Points:
    38
    I'd just walk the box over to the hive in the morning and dump them out in front, then put the empty box back. 2 or 3 days there would be no bees in it
     
  12. bobwheel

    bobwheel New Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Perfect. Thank you- we're going to do that!
     
  13. bee stung

    bee stung New Member

    Messages:
    82
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I would requeen ,,,, no mater were you put it you will still have to deal with them being pissy
     
  14. bobwheel

    bobwheel New Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Bee Stung, I think you could be right. These bees are a lot more aggressive than I thought they'd be, but I was dismissing myself since I'm a first-timer. We're going to move them, but think re-queening may be the next step.
     
  15. Ray

    Ray Member

    Messages:
    582
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    There are a lot of reasons for Bees being defensive. I give them the benefit of the doubt, requeening isn't a slam dunk. Some of my bees hate a small engine running, especially if the exhaust blow against the hive.
     
  16. bobwheel

    bobwheel New Member

    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    We moved them again tonight about 5 feet. They're re-orienting well and slowly getting further from the lawn. We're going to creat a screen by attaching two lattices together with a hinge (like a bi-fold door), then attaching the closest end of the screen to the fence. I'm hopeful this will give them a sense of security so they don't go as nuts with the equipment. They can go through the lattice screen of course, but maybe it will be a bit of a deterrent. Tonight we also added a super. The hive box weighed about 80 pounds when we moved it. Thinking about also making a stand with casters so moving will be a little easier since we still have a ways to go. Here's out progress for today. View attachment 9982