Trap-out with African Bees

Discussion in 'Swarms, Cut outs, and Trap outs' started by markles, Dec 2, 2011.

  1. markles

    markles New Member

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    Hello all. I dont know if this will be of any interest to anyone (or appropriate) but I live in South Africa and I've just started my first trap-out using the method I learned on this site. Thanks everyone and Iddee in particular.
    I'm doing the trap-out to help out a friend and because, as a newbee, I need the bees. They were living in the walls of a wooden office and fortunately restricted to a corner panel. Three days before fixing the cone I covered the main old entrances (numerous ) with a cover panel incorporating the new entrance. This new entrance was quickly accepted and I closed a number of other small entrances with steel wool and silicon.
    The cone was attached yesterday with silicon and a staple gun early in the morning and by the time this was done (three or four minutes) the bees were already going into the trap hive with its frame of brood and eggs. The movement into the trap-hive proceeded for the whole day and by evening the hive was about half full. My concern is will the bees have drawn out enough comb to house the honey in the wall by the time the old hive is empty of bees and I remove the cone?
    I'll attach a couple of photos and thanks for reading. Again I'd like to thank the forum for this invaluable knowlege base.[attachment=2:33404sz4]IMG_3719a.jpg[/attachment:33404sz4][attachment=1:33404sz4]IMG_3724a.jpg[/attachment:33404sz4][attachment=0:33404sz4]IMG_3737a.jpg[/attachment:33404sz4]
     

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  2. Zulu

    Zulu Member

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    Markles. Welcome

    I am a displaced souf effriken too.

    Iddee is one of my local mentors.

    Looking at your pic I would say Garden Route somewhere. My dad is in Sedgefield and I visited Corrie in march this year.

    Please keep posting your pics and outcome.
     

  3. markles

    markles New Member

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    Hi Zulu
    Good guess but Magaliesburg (Gauteng) actually. I'll report as things devellope.

    Cheers for now
     
  4. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Looking good. Glad to help in any way I can. Yes, the bees can draw comb as fast as they can bring food into the hive.
     
  5. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    Looking good to me.

    I have seen a swarm draw out comb as big as your open hand in a 24 hour period.

    How long have the bees been in the wall?

    After you don't see any more bees exiting the cone (maybe around 30 days) you can remove it and let the trap out bees rob what ever is left inside.

    Keep us posted, since it is winter around here we are needing our bee "fix" :lol:
     
  6. Zulu

    Zulu Member

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    Wasn't expecting a wooden building there. Cool.

    I lived in Honeydew for years. And flew at the Magalies gliding club occasionally.
     
  7. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    small world ain't it!! and to think a little bug could bring us this close together :lol: :lol:
     
  8. markles

    markles New Member

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    Had a call from my friend this afternoon to say the bees were clogging the cone, so I went to have a look. By the time I got there there were still a lot of bees in the cone but they were exiting. I did notice they had eaten a small hole in the cone (bird wire covered with fibre/plastic mesh) so I patched it with more of the plastic mesh and silicon - problem solved for now. The plastic mesh was all I could get at the time I made the cone but I did manage to find a supplier of steel mesh this morning. I'm going to have to go and get some on Monday.
    Anyway, as I was suited up I thought I might as well check the brood box and found it chocker block full. Luckily I had a shallow super and queen excluder with me which I put on. The bees got really angry and for about ten minutes it was like standing in a hail storm with all the stinging going on. I'm going to have to remove the trap-hive and replace it with an empty one (with a frame of brood and eggs) - didn't think that would happen so quickly.
    Iddee and G3, thanks for the reassurance about the comb and taking the time to respond. Zulu, the timber building is only an office. I know the gliding club well - my other hobby is flying discus launch gliders.
     
  9. rast

    rast New Member

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    Markles, thank you for sharing this with us.
     
  10. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Like rast and G3 said, thanks for taking the pics and sharing, it's a slow time for most of us.
    Your pics are appreciated. :thumbsup:
     
  11. markles

    markles New Member

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    Looking back over the posts I see I didn't answer G3's question about the age of the colony, sorry - the owner thinks they've been there a year, maybe more.

    Anyway, I moved the full brood box and super home last night without incident. I'm hoping they dont return to the old location as its only about one and a half kilometers as the crow flies. I did obstruct the entrance with some branches to try and get them to reorientate.
    I placed the new empty trap-hive last night and will put some brood and eggs in it as soon as the morning sun warms things a bit.

    Zulu, if your looking for a bit of nostalgia have a look at our web site, www.kingfishers.co.za (see the map).

    Cheers for now
     
  12. markles

    markles New Member

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    Sorry for posting over myself but I think with the time difference most are probably still sleeping.

    The weather is not playing ball (overcast, cool and windy) but I decided to put a frame of brood and eggs in the new empty trap-hive anyway, which I've just done. The parent hive wasn't busy at all ('cause of the weather) but I noticed dead bees in the cone (maybe thirty) which I expected, but there were also dead pupae in the cone (bee size but white) also about thirty. I wasn't expecting that - is it normal? Any light shedding would be much appreciated.

    Cheer for now

    Mark
     
  13. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    Just curious, are the bees your working with the aggressive race of honeybee that has gained notoriety in the states, know there are several races of bees in and through out Africa. as for the pupae unless perhaps there was something wrong with the brood that wouldn't be noticed without close scrutiny, you may want to closely watch your new colony. if only a few being disposed of I probably wouldn't worry too much, large numbers are a different matter. Welcome to the forum :goodpost:
     
  14. markles

    markles New Member

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    Barry, yup apis mellifera scutellata. I read in astonishment about people attending their bees clad only in swimming trunks etc. You wouldn't want to do that with our bees although, I do find that with a bit of handling they become far more tollerant.

    Cheers for now

    Mark
     
  15. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    Off topic here, but is Kingfishers your farm?

    Very nice looking place for sure
     
  16. markles

    markles New Member

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    Yes, we develloped it from scratch and have been open to the public for about five years now. We still wake up every morning and feel blessed.
     
  17. Zulu

    Zulu Member

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    You must be real close to Pete Roberts horse farm, old friend of mine.
     
  18. markles

    markles New Member

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    Hi Zulu

    pm in your box

    Cheers

    Mark
     
  19. gunsmith

    gunsmith New Member

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    Mark:

    Sorry it took me so long to welcome you to this forum, so WELCOME, WELCOME, WELCOME.
    Thank you for posting the great looking photos of your trap-out, please keep us posted as to the progress.
    I'm a first year beekeeper here in the U.S. and am very interested in the methodology of keeping aggressive bees. As you probably know, there is a big scare here about the Africanized honey bees invading the U.S.(thanks to the cinema.)
    Again, I would like to add my welcome to the others you have received.
    Rodger
     
  20. markles

    markles New Member

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    Hello and thank you Rodger.
    The trap-out is going well. Three days ago I moved a full box of bees back to our farm and placed an empty one at the trap-out site. Yesterday I had to replace the fibre mesh cone with a metal one - easily done. While I was suited up I decided to check how full the second box was and to my surprise found there were only enough bees to cover the brood (despite a constant flow of bees leaving the cone) - no queen cells have been pulled out yet. The owner reported that the day after I replaced the full box with an empty one he had seen a big swarm in the immediate area. I'm thinking now that the bees must have already started making "arrangements" to swarm when I started the trap-out and that the colony is now headed by a virgin queen. If so, I wonder what happens now- will the virgin queen move into the trap-out hive when she goes on her mating flight and cant go home?
    Judging by the number of bees still leaving on a daily basis I am still expecting to get at least three strong hives from this colony.
    I'm now on day seven of the procedure.

    Cheers for now