You are here:

Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Transferring a bee hive

Advertisement


Question
I know this question is quite unorthodox so if you aren't able to answer I'll understand. A friend of mine had a bee hive nesting in a traffic cone next to her house. These are honey bees and we live in Florida. Knowing I have bees, my friend allowed me to take this hive to try and integrate it into a box hive. What I did was to set up a brood box with 10 frames; then transported the cone with bees on the top of this box hives lid with a hole in the center approximately 3 inches in diameter. The cone was covered with a plastic garbage bag and the edges were taped down to the lid so the bees would be forced to find the entrance and exit in the box hive. 2 months later, the hive is thriving well; now comes the question within questions. I need to remove the cone from the top of the hive, but my concern is where is the queen. And if she is in the cone still, would honey robber work to drive her into the box? Secondly, if I was successful with having the queen in the box portion, there probably is honey stored in there which I don't want to deprive the hive of, yet with raccoons etc upending the cone on the ground does not seem an option as the first night the nocturnal critters are more than likely to invade. I don't want to stress this hive into swarming so if you had any suggestions as to how to go about removing the cone etc it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Bill

Answer
Bill:

I'm sorry, but apiculture is not my thing....However, I'd advise cutting and pasting your question and putting it to the Beekeeping category in AllExperts.com.  Look under "Hobbies," then "Pastimes."  Here is your question if it does not appear with my answer:

I know this question is quite unorthodox so if you aren't able to answer I'll understand. A friend of mine had a bee hive nesting in a traffic cone next to her house. These are honey bees and we live in Florida. Knowing I have bees, my friend allowed me to take this hive to try and integrate it into a box hive. What I did was to set up a brood box with 10 frames; then transported the cone with bees on the top of this box hives lid with a hole in the center approximately 3 inches in diameter. The cone was covered with a plastic garbage bag and the edges were taped down to the lid so the bees would be forced to find the entrance and exit in the box hive. 2 months later, the hive is thriving well; now comes the question within questions. I need to remove the cone from the top of the hive, but my concern is where is the queen. And if she is in the cone still, would honey robber work to drive her into the box? Secondly, if I was successful with having the queen in the box portion, there probably is honey stored in there which I don't want to deprive the hive of, yet with raccoons etc upending the cone on the ground does not seem an option as the first night the nocturnal critters are more than likely to invade. I don't want to stress this hive into swarming so if you had any suggestions as to how to go about removing the cone etc it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Bill

Good luck with the cone removal!

Cheers,

Eric

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Eric R. Eaton

Expertise

I answer insect and spider identification questions ONLY. Attach images if possible. No "what bit me?", "what do I feed this bug in captivity?", or science fair project questions please. NO TECHNICAL QUESTIONS ABOUT INSECT PHYSIOLOGY.

Experience

Principal author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. Professional entomologist employed previously at University of Massachusetts, Chase Studio, Inc., and Cincinnati Zoo; contract work for West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, Smithsonian Institution, and Portland (Oregon) State University.

Publications
Author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Missouri Conservationist magazine, Ranger Rick, Birds & Blooms, Timeline (journal of the Ohio Historical Society). I have contributed to several books as well.

Education/Credentials
Oregon State University, undergraduate major in entomology, did not receive degree.

Awards and Honors
One of the top 50 experts in all categories for AllExperts.com, 2009.

Past/Present Clients
Principal author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Smithsonian Institution (contract), Cincinnati Zoo (employer), Portland State University (contract), Chase Studio, Inc (employer), Arkansas Museum of Discovery (guest speaker). Currently seeking speaking engagements, leadership roles at nature festivals, workshops, and ecotours.

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.