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roche 

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About 4 years ago, a neighbour knocked on the door and asked if I wanted some bees. A swarm had arrived and was busy shifting into its new accommodation: about twenty feet up a brick wall. By the time I got there, they (the bees) had well and truly made up their mind that that was home, and there was no way they were going to move.

A year or so later he asked if there was any way of knowing if they were still there, so I suggested an infra-red shot. Sure enough they were there, about a foot square. Not causing any problem, he was happy to let them be.

This year, mid June, he noticed they were getting pretty busy, so he took another picture:
image1.jpeg
The darker area to the left is a brick gable end. The bees are in a sloping ceiling and a little bit of vertical wall behind the bottle.

They were doing well. Maybe a bit too well. He gave me a call today, just a little concerned about the size, and potential for honey to pull the ceiling down...I wandered over to have a look:
image0.jpeg
Interestingly the size of the colony seems to have decreased, suggesting that they may have swarmed. Although my neighbour is more relaxed about them, they do probably need to find new accommodation. Given that access is limited to drilling a few small holes in the ceiling, and scaffolding on the outside to their entrance, how to get them out?

All replies gratefully received...

Regards,

Roche.
 
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Look up Honey bee Trap out in google. It's possible to get the foragers and you can potentially smoke out the rest of them by smoking or bee quick through a hole in the ceiling. You may not get the queen but you could make up a colony and either add a queen or let them build their own. You will need to make up some kit to do it.

The other possibility is a bee vac if you could get a hose up through the ceiling ?

A few options - none of them easy I'm afraid.
 

enrico 

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I have done a similar cut out in the past in a house being renovated. I had to remove the plasterboard. The area of bees was massive and from the moment I started removing the board I had honey running everywhere. I did succeed and the house owner now has 20 hives of his own. He was so fascinated by the whole thing he got hooked! All I learnt was never to attempt a ceiling cut out again. It would be hell in a house being lived in! I was dripping in honey from head to toe. I used a bee vac for the bees but yuc!
If you do try it then sheets of plastic and loads of empty bins and water to wash in! Brilliant photos by the way. Wish I had had one then!
E
 

Newbeeneil 

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As Pargyle says, it is possible to milk off bees by a trap but it's only possible with a single entrance to the nest. I successfully removed all bees apart from the queen from a ventilation duct but I could seal both ends which is unusual in most situations. If you can do it you also need to be able to seal the nest to prevent a swarm seeing the recently vacated "des res" as their new home and ending up with the same situation.
I would say the only real option would be a cut out but as already has been said this option can be extremely messy!!
Good luck!
 

beaumontrod 

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Just a thought if the house owner is a friend. If you do a trap out, you leave the honey and wax behind. No so bad if it is a tree in a forest, but in a house that will attract rodents, cockroaches and all sorts of other problems. If not, the unattended honey will ferment. Just not nice.
There is only one thing to do. It is not easy, but you need to go in there to remove them.
Otherwise you could be the problem.

Sent from my A1601 using Tapatalk
 

enrico 

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Just a thought if the house owner is a friend. If you do a trap out, you leave the honey and wax behind. No so bad if it is a tree in a forest, but in a house that will attract rodents, cockroaches and all sorts of other problems. If not, the unattended honey will ferment. Just not nice.
There is only one thing to do. It is not easy, but you need to go in there to remove them.
Otherwise you could be the problem.

Sent from my A1601 using Tapatalk
I totally agree
E
 

roche 

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Thanks people, for the replies. I have done a few cutouts in the past, one requiring the removal of a flat roof. I seem to remember a document which gave a good list of options...I'll dig that out. The pests and rodent thing is relevant here. A problem with bleed outs is the remaining brood and queen. The saving grace may be that they are mainly under a tiled roof, so I may be able to remove some tiles to gain access. It could depend on whether a membrane is below them, together with the acceptability of that as a solution.
Thanks again,
Roche
 

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