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Drone Bee
Beekeeping Sponsor
May 12, 2009
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North Wilts
Hive Type
Number of Hives
Lots and lots
My last daft question for the day!! (for now anyway! :) )

We mow the farm twice a year for silage and to promote further growth. The tractor and mower may pass relatively near to the hive (about 10 yards)

During this time, does anyone block up their hive for an hour when this is happening or do they tend to be ok?

We don't want any tractor drivers stung! :)

I have seen blue sponge for sale which is about the same size as enterance holes. Is this what it is for?

Yes the blue sponge is to block the entrance up.

When I move hives I use a piece of pipe lagging,the foam type,with an OMF and a travel screen I dont think you need to ventilate the entrance with soft foam.

Regards shutting the bees in to mow its up to you,its the vibration that will set them off,I mow up against my hives every few weeks with a petrol mower and the bees don't seem bothered by it.
Unless your tractor is ancient and hasn't got a cab there should be no problem at 10 mtrs. I cut my grass with a ride on mower up to 2mtrs behind the hives and the only problem I get is incoming and departing bees banging into me - some go round but some do not:(
Advise the driver to keep the windows shut when passing the apiary.
:cheers2: Mike
But I need to move the hives for a day so a friendly builder can hardcore my new out apiary- for free.
The weather is 6d in morning rising to 16d and sunny by mid afternoon. It may take him a few hours to bring in base core, and pack down. How long will the bees be comfortable locked in.?? They can be put under shading trees
I locked my bees in for most of the day whilst having the front of the house painted. They were none the worse for it. :cheers2:
You might get away with locking them in for a day if they are in shade, assuming it is a wooden hive and you leave the varroa tray out. However, I would put on some sort of travel screen. You could fit an empty super on the top which has had a bit of muslin or greenhouse shading tied or pinned to it. This will give them plenty of ventilation and you can spray them with water. If it is a full hive they might otherwise overheat.
Good thinking Rooftops- I have travel screens but didn't occur to me to use on this occasion.
Thursday's the day now- a new out apiary that will accommodate about 10 hives, with a friendly builder to do ALL the grotty work - for free, bless him.

It is hidden from the road, surrounded by nettles to shield it from view- a lake in the next field, and the south downs to give some weather protection - going to be GOOD!
Ours were fine with tractors - but it certainly made them very grumpy for a fortnight. Don't inspect soon after tractoring....
I'm about to mow the grass area around my newish hive for the first time.I understand that it's the vibratioin that the bees don't like.
Any advice on how close to the stand I can take the rotary petrol mower, please.?
Is it better to mow midday when many will be out forraging or in the evening when they're all home from work?
I'll ignore any advice on doing it when they're all at church on Sunday!
i strim right up to mine but wear a bee suit, the mower driver cuts within 10ft of the back of the hive with no problems, no suit, no cab

if locking in, then i would put in a frame feeder of 25% syrup and 24 hrs is fine, bees use to be sent by railway delivery and that was a special "urgent" livestock delivery by passenger train

i remember my GF received some from EH Taylors on Welwyn in the 1960s that way. they sent a letter saying which train the would arrive and we collected them off the train ta few days later
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it mite bee best to block them in the night be for
you mite have lots milling if you block them out or no hive to come home to
i think
You'll just have to try it and see, I reckon. Mine take no notice of a 4-stroke mower at all, and I do it at various times of day. If they're Queen right and not particularly aggressive you should be Ok, if not, wear your protective gear for the ten minutes it takes. No big deal.

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