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Dave G

Some advice needed for cut out

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Hi

I need some advice on what to do with a rescue / cut out

 

I was called to have a look at an "old hive". It turns out that an old bee keeper used to live at this house about 7 or 8 years ago. His son gave me a call to come and have a look.

 

There were a whole heap of hives at the back of his place, most in an extreme state of disrepair. One of the hives had attracted a swarm and they have taken up residence, for what seemed to me to be at least one season, may be more.

 

I tried opening as much as I could however most of the supers are very tightly packed and if I started dismantling the hive I would need to have somewhere to house them straight away. I decided just to have a look as best I could and reassess what to do then.

 

I did lift the lid and found a lot of burr comb throughout the top box. It was laden with honey and seemed to go down a few supers.

 

The bees seemed quite happy. There wasn't a large amount of activity and it didn't seem that the population was very large. I was doing this about 9am, so not in the middle of the day.

 

So what now??

Should I:

1. Do a cut out now, dismantle the hive and get it into a box. Take out the comb and use rubber bands to place the comb into a frame, relocate and feed and treat them for varroa?

2. Leave this at the moment (the owner is in no hurry) and come back and cut this out in mid to late September when the hive will be starting to grow and things will be getting warmer.

3. Go down to the local for a beer?

 

Some photos are attached

Any thoughts, wisdom and insights would be greatly appreciated!!

 

Thanks

Dave

[GALLERY=media, 1196]20170808_092001_resized by Dave G posted Aug 8, 2017 at 11:15[/GALLERY]

[GALLERY=media, 1197]20170808_092048(0)_resized by Dave G posted Aug 8, 2017 at 11:16[/GALLERY]

[GALLERY=media, 1198]20170808_092103_resized by Dave G posted Aug 8, 2017 at 11:17[/GALLERY]

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The first thing to do is test all the boxes, brood and wax for AFB. Send samples to AsureQuality amd make sure you are not going to spread AFB.

Check for varroa and make sure that these bees are disease free and varroa free.

If in doubt, burn the whole lot as an extream risk to everybody.

Thanks Dave.

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This is another thread with photos that either won't download or are taking an age to partially download.

This has only been happening over the past 2-3 weeks and only on NZ bees.

It's making me grumpy :mad:

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This is another thread with photos that either won't download or are taking an age to partially download.

This has only been happening over the past 2-3 weeks and only on NZ bees.

It's making me grumpy :mad:

Photos pop up instantly for me....PC.....

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The first thing to do is test all the boxes, brood and wax for AFB. Send samples to AsureQuality amd make sure you are not going to spread AFB.

Check for varroa and make sure that these bees are disease free and varroa free.

If in doubt, burn the whole lot as an extream risk to everybody.

Thanks Dave.

Thanks @Martin Garside ,

I have assumed that there will be a varroa issue and therefore I will treat regardless.

I will definitely be checking for AFB and if found, burn the lot.!

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All that burr comb needs scraping off . Put everything you scrape off in a top feeder to feed back to them . That's the easy bit .

 

You need to get those frames into some better boxes so the hive can eventually be moved , so can you get the frames out without breaking them ? If you can , then good . If not , then you're in for more of a challenge

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You need to get those frames into some better boxes

What frames are you talking about. I only see burr comb.

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What frames are you talking about. I only see burr comb.

You need some of those new progressive glasses

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What frames are you talking about. I only see burr comb.

Hi @Trevor Gillbanks

 

The design of the hive is quite "unique" . The boxes are not the same dimensions as a Langstroth. I understand in talking to the son that his father made his own frames and boxes. From what I could make out the frames are like normal Lang frames but only about half the length - almost like a mini nuc frame. There are 20 to a box with a central support rail running down the middle of the box and one end of the frame sitting on this rail and the other end sitting on the super.

 

The frames are there in the supers further below the burr comb - I just couldn't get to them. They will almost certainly be propolised in - and I think they would almost be destroyed in the act of removing them from the hive. The state of the wood is such that I think I'd be left with a pile of wood after the job and nothing (except for the burr comb and bees) that could be used in a new hive.

 

A bit of a challange!

 

@Trevor Gillbanks , do you have any thoughts about timing? Should I attempt this sooner rather than later, or wait until the weather is warmer and the queen in starting to lay?

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What frames are you talking about. I only see burr comb.

The second link takes you to a pic of a rotten box with frames visible through the side.

For some reason , the pics are not displayed in the usual way

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Yikes.

Big job there..

I must say I don't envy you.

If it's not diseased and doing ok I'd wait until September like you say, or it probably won't make it.

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@Trevor Gillbanks , do you have any thoughts about timing? Should I attempt this sooner rather than later, or wait until the weather is warmer and the queen in starting to lay?

Yes. I have thought about it.

Try and remove the boxes with the bees and honey and get them to your place or somewhere convienient.

The boxes still look langstroth size so I would lift the burr comb honey box above a queen excluder for removal later.

Set the brood box on a base and then put a fresh box with frames on top of the brood box.

Then put on the queen excluder and then the burr comb.

Tape up all the gaps in the rotten box so you can control the entrance of the bees.

As the bees move into the fresh box then you will be able to remove the old brood box and burn it.

Treat the brood boxes for varroa.

When the bees clear the burr comb you can crush and strain any burr comb remaining.

Burn all old equipment.

Check for AFB. etc

 

I am sure you get the idea. Don't try to do it as a cut out as that will be real mess.

You can start this as soon as possible.

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Yes. I have thought about it.

Try and remove the boxes with the bees and honey and get them to your place or somewhere convienient.

The boxes still look langstroth size so I would lift the burr comb honey box above a queen excluder for removal later.

Set the brood box on a base and then put a fresh box with frames on top of the brood box.

Then put on the queen excluder and then the burr comb.

Tape up all the gaps in the rotten box so you can control the entrance of the bees.

As the bees move into the fresh box then you will be able to remove the old brood box and burn it.

Treat the brood boxes for varroa.

When the bees clear the burr comb you can crush and strain any burr comb remaining.

Burn all old equipment.

Check for AFB. etc

 

I am sure you get the idea. Don't try to do it as a cut out as that will be real mess.

You can start this as soon as possible.

Wow!

Thanks for your solution @Trevor Gillbanks , this is what years of experience, wisdom and ingenuity look like!

I'll gather some helpers (I think this is more than a one man mission), get my equipment together and get this done.

I'll also take some photos and post these as well.

It will be a good challenge. Then I will attempt option 3 above on the same day!

 

Thanks Trev!!

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Just remember to make haste slowly. In other words take your time. I would expect it to take 2 or 3 months to do this. But you should have a brand new fully functioning hive and all the old equipment burnt.

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Just remember to make haste slowly. In other words take your time. I would expect it to take 2 or 3 months to do this. But you should have a brand new fully functioning hive and all the old equipment burnt.

Thanks Trev .. I had an idea that this would take some time to "migrate" the bees to the new box. Happy to take the time.

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Good advice by @Trevor Gillbanks

 

It's letting the bees do all the work as long as you align what they need to do with what you want them to do.

 

Then it's Easy.

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Good advice by @Trevor Gillbanks

 

It's letting the bees do all the work as long as you align what they need to do with what you want them to do.

 

Then it's Easy.

Yes. That is exactly what I was trying to portray. What I should have added.

Once the bees get started in the first new box then remove the queen excluder and fit an escape board (clearing board) in its place. This will then get rid of the burr honey box.

The burr honey can be crushed and feed back to the bees.

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