My thoughts are the same as Dawn’s except I don’t allow the hot colony to make any queen cells with their own brood.
Neither do I. My new queen was laid back and from Hawaii. However, if I had a hot hive in a non-africanized area, I would not want her daughters ruling the hive, ever.
Have you got canola or rapeseed nearby? I’ve heard of people having issues when that is in flower. Perhaps a particular source of nectar is causing the issue, especially if they weren’t previously so bad??
I don’t think so. None that I’ve seen.
They’re on a friends acreage with 6 other hives that are all lovely. I’ve had other hives get very cranky on inspection but the next time are back to being gentle. This one is just so aggressive, it’s hard to do anything with them. I walked away with 6 stings yesterday and barely hit the brood box
Hi Natalie, the main part of my strategy is in the first half of my video. The last half didn’t work out well because most of the bees went back to the original hive. That left the brood that I left vulnerable to SHB damage, which did happen. There was a lesson learnt there. I should have closed them up & taken them back to my place or at least 5 k’s away so the bees would stay with the brood.
The first 1/2 worked well. They made a nice new queen. I guess with my strategy, you actually get 2 new queens.
Thanks so much Jeff. It was a very informative video.
I’ve never killed a queen before and am not looking forward to it but it’s completely unworkable and has been for a few months now. Plus, it’s on a friends property and although there’s been no issues for them so far, if someone bothered them there would be a good possibility of death with their explosive aggression. I walked away with 6 stings and my friend with 3 (and she was standing way back). They chased us for ages. My suit is COVERED in stingers.
I’m going to go up tomorrow and sort this out. I have 6 other lovely hives to pick from.
Do you just squish her between your fingers? Or step on her or similar? I’m dreading it…
Natalie, your most welcome. Killing the queen is the easy part Squash between fingers.
If you prepare well, everything will be fine. If you do what I did at the first part of the video, there’s no need to find the queen that day, or if you did it in the morning, you can wait til later on that day. The reason for this is so that a lot of the bees will have left & gone back to the original site as long as you take it well away. The longer you leave it, the better because you will only have nurse bees to contend with. Give us a ring if you have any issues.
Squash her between your fingers, Natalie, do it fast and that is a humane way, she definitely has to be replaced. Not a nice thing to do but you need to do it for your safety and piece of mind.
Most people squish, but I can’t do that myself. I put her in a small pot, then stick her in the freezer. If you add a little rubbing alcohol once she is dead (keep it in the freezer with her floating in it), it will extract the queen pheromones and you can use a couple of drops in a swarm trap. So even when dead, she is still helping bees.
No problems at all Natalie, you’ll be able to get virgin queens mated right through winter.
Jeff, you’re my absolute guru! No more freaking out, I’m gonna sort this crap out now! Thank you, thank you, thank you!
In our climate there are drones in number all of the year. Our Winter is a good Summer climate in other locations. I have done splits right through our Winter. This is our Summer and my hives have lots of drones right now so you should not have an issue. Just do it and you will have a new queen.
Thank YOU Natalie, there is no need to freak out at all. When I say prepare in advance, I mean to have your second brood box read. Also have something to sit the honey super on so as to minimize bending over. Have your smoker well primed. At 9.30am, you’ve probably finished by now. I hope it all went well. cheers
Well, it didn’t quite work out as intended. I went through the hive I planned to donate from and although honey wise they’re pretty good, brood was pretty poor. I did see some eggs but not many. So I decided I’ll donate from a different hive that’s on my property and will need to pull frames from them on Wed and head straight back up to my site to complete it.
And then think about this other hive that’s slowed a bit.
At the very least, I hung around near my aggressive hive for about 1/2 hr to see if I’d be attacked and they were fine. So I feel more comfortable that no one will be mauled just by walking past.
Fair enough Natalie, it’s a bit too hot to be doing anything in a bee suit anyway. I’ve been getting all of my bee work done before breakfast. This morning I returned home with a spare sticky, so I added it to the colony I did the update on before breakfast.
It’s good that you feel comfortable that no one will get attacked. There is storms around. I’m hearing the first bit of thunder now. With storms around, that could change their mood for the worse.
Make sure you wash your suit, as the alarm pheromone will be all over it - which might be setting them in to attack mode every time
Yes, I learnt that the hard way before with a different hive.
More curiosity than anything else, how long do the alarm pheromones stay on the suit? If I only go into the hive every two weeks, with a last that long that I really would need to wash it?.
And that draws another question, is there anything you could wash the suit with that would help the hive be more comfortable the suit i.e. odor wise
I guess that all depends on how much the bees didn’t like your interrupting them, the more they tried to torment you the stronger the deposit of pheromones would be left on your suit. From my own experience if I have a hard time with my bees the first thing I do when I get home is to throw my suit and gloves in the washing machine. As well as washing powder I add about 1/3 cup of washing vinegar, it might help with killing the pheromone but it certainly help in the cleaning of the gear.