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Relocating from cable drum


Hi all, New to forum and bees. Expecting a flow hive later in the year but at the moment have a electrical cable drum at work full of bees! I have directed to this site from Flow Hives FB page. Is there anyway to intice them out as drum is full of cable. If removed would they be happy in a temporary place until my flow hive arrives? I have a picture but being new it will not allow me to up load.


Hi McFoxdale! Bees will discover the most unusual places to establish their colonies. There are many people here who work with swarms and relocating bees. Until they reply, research “trap outs” or “how to remove bees with a trap out” . You will find plenty of options. Is there a local beekeeper club near you? If so, they would be a great resource too. Good Luck!


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What sort of cable drum is it? If it’s timber they are generally held together with long bolts and can be disassembled to access the bees. If it’s a plastic one perhaps see if you can get hold of another drum to run the cable on to so you can take the bees home to cut out at your leisure. Search in YouTube for bee removal, there’s plenty of videos to watch and lots to be learned.


Timber drum, problem is it’s quite full. Not sure the bees would appreciate me rolling off the excess. Researching YouTube now. Cheers


This is a friend of mine on YouTube (628DirtRooster) He has some great videos on hive removals but you really need someone with a little experience otherwise you could end up destroying the bees which I assume you do not want to do :slight_smile:


If I relocate the cable drum home do you think they would eventually make the move to my flow hive?



Chances are you will not be able to entice them out of there. As previously mentioned a trapout is a possibility but this could be a long drawn process with no guarantees. Your best bet is carefully make a large circular cut using a jigsaw so you can reach in the remove all the comb. Then strap this comb into empty frames (using rubber bands or string) and insert into a new hive body. When all the comb is in the hive box and you were able to scoop, sweep, shake as many nurse bees in there as possible, close it up and leave as close to the now empty cable drum as possible for a couple of nights before relocating.


are they located inside the middle axle? Or inside the wooden outer wall? It looks like both pieces are bolted in place and could easily be disassembled


A very good point Adam, avoid using a jigsaw if possible as the sound and vibrations will only aggravate them.


First the disclaimer: I’m an absolute novice but I’ve read plenty about attempts to relocate bees by cutting up the existing hive. It seems a very destructive technique but it often seems to work. I’m wondering if you could slowly run the cable off at night without disturbing the bees too much. Respooling it from that big cable spooler wouldn’t be too much of a problem if you have a suitable spare spooler and drum. Then you would be able to disassemble the hive drum and relocate the hive.

Your cable spooler seems a good sized bit of kit and I imagine you would be needing it for cable laying from time to time.


I think the trapout method would be the best method to use. you need a queen in a cage, a frame of brood plus some empty frames first thing in the morning. Put the hive entrance near the trapout with the queen cage on the entrance. As soon as you get a good number of bees at the queen cage, move it inside the hive. Guaranteed to work as long as your prepared to wait quite a few weeks.


@adagna I recently took an empty one home and yes easily to disassemble just undo the four bolts. @sciencemaster bees are very lucky it’s not a common cable we use or they’d be eradicated :scream:. Seems a possibility rolling it off steady, have discussed with the boss and has oked to move whole thing to my house. Thinking plug up entry points early one morning/evening. Then loading up.


Relocated the cable drum late this evening to a beekeepers property. Got tagged three times in the process but was well worth it.


Nice work, keep us informed of your progress… always interesting