smoking

Discussion in 'Organic Beekeeping' started by tecumseh, May 27, 2010.

  1. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    My GUESS would be... most likely NO. The aromatics will burn off and it is likely the effect on the bees is much different than you would expect. Some stuff that you put in the smoker may have beneficial results but typically it ain't the sort of stuff you would think would be beneficial.

    If you want some small beneficial effect for your effort get some honey b healthy (or brew up your own) and place this plus some sugar water in a spray bottle and lightly spray the bees at the top bar(s) area(s).
     
  2. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    yes there is a receipt out there on the net and it is fairly easy to put together from items acquired from almost any decent health food stores.

    I don't really measure out that sort of thing but the ingredients 'kinda' include (in a half gallon of thin syrup)... a good dollop of lecithin (acts as a preservative so not absolutely essential if you are using the mix real quick) , two or three drops of spearmint oil, two or three drops of lemon oil and a large heaping tablespoon of liquid vitamin b.

    a commercial bee keeper I know thinks the regular application of the above (each time you crack open a hive) encourages mutual grooming and thereby 'MAY' be beneficial in controlling varroa.
     

  3. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    cheaper maybe.,,, better I don't know.

    I do like to have stuff about that I can acquire locally without waiting 4 days after ordering something from a thousand miles away from someone that I don't know. it is just likely a personality flaw.
     
  4. Bitty Bee

    Bitty Bee New Member

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    I think the smell of the smoke does have an effect on the bees. For instance our bees prefer pine needle smoke over fallen leaves. They also seem to like it when we add dried sumac berries to the smoker fuel as well. I'll experiment with that, Sam, as soon as we have a few dried herbs to spare. Thanks for the idea.
     
  5. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    Don't know about the soothing quality of aromatic smoke, but do know if your smoker is too hot, the smoke will be hot, and that will definately cause you issues, rather then calming the girls down, you will find out the opposite. A nice dense, cool smoke is what you need, the aroma I really don't think matters, remembering what the smoke is susposed to mean to the bees--namely a fire in thier colony--initially smoke is cool but dense--a trigger for the bees to try to either ventiliate and put the fire out, or as the fire progresses, vacate the nesting cavity.
    Barry
     
  6. Mama Beek

    Mama Beek New Member

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    I was reading something yesterday about using tobacco leaves to smoke the bees. The writer was claiming that it made the bees much calmer and easier to deal with..... I've never tried it so I wouldn't know but if it turns out that they do like it how in the world would you deal with them on the day that you didn't happen to have a tobacco leaf?? :chased:

    Our bees definitely seem to have a preference with smoke. They prefer pine needles to leaves or grasses, the don't seem to be offended by cotton that has fallen off someone truck, they get angry with any kind of wood that we've tried. They seem to LOVE sumac berries, blackberry leaves, strawberry leaves, black cherry leaves, and grape leaves. We have never tried herbs like lavender or bee balm but if I find myself needing smoker fuel and it's handy I'll try it out.
     
  7. BeeHunter

    BeeHunter New Member

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    I drive by a tobacco farm going to work and pick leaves after they harvest. I use them when I have them but dont know if it helps or not. I thought I read they helped distract mite too? It gives me a headach if I get too much. I hope I dont get the girls hooked!lol
     
  8. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    there are some folks in europe (I have read) that use tobacco smoke to knock down mites when testing with a sticky board. since nicotinic acid is an insecticide use should be with some caution. the state bee inspector here has a smoker from europe specifically designed to use tobacco... it is very small and has no bellow but operates by the beekeeper blowing on what looks like the stem of a pipe.
     
  9. Redcrane

    Redcrane New Member

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    Told my adult kids that I was thinking about using pot in my smoker. One said that it might not calm them down but that they sure would fly high. The other opined that maby they would just get the munchies and eat all of the honey.
     
  10. srvfantexasflood

    srvfantexasflood New Member

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    I know a long time beekeeper that said his mentor taught him to use dried sumac buds in the smoker. He swore it helped control varroa.
     
  11. Bitty Bee

    Bitty Bee New Member

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    That's exactly what Idee told me. I don't know the science behind it, but I know we've never had very bad varroa mite problems.:dontknow:
     
  12. samo's beekeeping

    samo's beekeeping New Member

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    tobacco smoke don't knock down mites. tobacco leaves fight waxmoths if you put them on the frames. as lavender , tomato leaves, nuttree leaves also.
    i use tobacco smoke when i forget the smoker (cigarette smoke). this instrument was in use 30-40 years ago, from beekeers becouse today's smoker didn't exist. it was made from wood, metal even pottery.