Smoking new hives or hives in general

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by An-Nahl, May 6, 2009.

  1. An-Nahl

    An-Nahl New Member

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    I know or at least have read about hives being set back a few days if they are smoked for inspections…


    …is it better not to smoke when inspecting (especially with a new hive, don’t want to set them back at all) …or should I just smoke the hive.

    other than the obvious, is there advantages to either?

    Thank you in advance!


    Paul
     
  2. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Smoke lightly. About two very light puffs in the entrance is enough. Drift it in lightly, don't BLOW it in. Working them without smoke may cause more set back than with smoke, but most new beeks over smoke.
     

  3. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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    Smoke your arm one day. Then wait several hours and at dinner, smell your arm. I bet hours later you will still smell the smoke residue.

    So what haapens when you smoke your bees? The same residue is carried throughout the hive. This residue interfers with the queens pheromones, and the bees go into a hyperactive mode of grooming. This grooming is just like dusting your bees with sugar or other "trigger" type controls. They will do what they can to rid themselves of this foriegn smell.

    Foraging will continue in short order. The whole idea that the hive is set back days in production to me is a bunch of "book filler" from some guy needing something unique to say to stand out by coming up with something.


    And even if you lost some production (as small as it probably is) it is still offset by the advantages and benefits of the bees intensifying their grooming, and lessening the mite levels.

    I smoke lightly. I smoke the crap out of them. Each hive is different. Some require more. I don't think you harm bees by smoking, nor do I think you lose much in production.
     
  4. An-Nahl

    An-Nahl New Member

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    I have read about the grooming when smoked... I also read they groom whenever the hive is open/inspected... (not sure if this is true... perhaps ridding of my odor :lol:)

    I know I have had to use more smoke on a heavier populated hive